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Health Insurance

The health insurance scheme of the institute has won several accolades as it seeks to create health consciousness in the community. A villager can insure himself and his family by paying Rs 400 a year and in return he gets 50% subsidy in OPD and indoor bills. In 2014-15,a total of 67409 families (263316 members), around Sevagram volunteered to obtain health insurance from this hospital. This included 40 villages and 21134 families and 75099 individuals. No other medical institution has achieved this kind of coverage so consistently over the years and at so affordable a rate.

Another distinguished Insurance scheme is The Jowar Health Assurance Scheme with a successful track record of 34-years, fulfilling the very basic tenets of health care delivery. Here each participating village is made responsible to pay a payment with the rest of the health expense being covered by the hospital with financial support from the central and state governments. This co-payment (hardly 10% of total amount spent on them) was in the form of a common fund created by the villager by collecting Jowar (sorghum) during the annual December harvest time. Each family in the village contributed based on the size of the individual families land holding. Thus families contributed according to their capacity but received services according to their needs. The collected harvest was then sold to generate a fund which was then used to provide health assurance for the villagers by strengthening primary care services within the village, and also by subsidizing tertiary level health care for all the participants.This micro-finance health insurance scheme allowed individual villages to get the benefit of universal health coverage. For a mere 10% equity it allowed these villages to gain access to additional public health resources from the central and state government through Kasturba Hospital who picked up the additional 90% of the health care expenses. Thus crafting and implementing this scheme created an environment of active self-participation in health care decision making by the villagers and made it accessible and affordable by linking to existing governmental resources. In 2014-15, 3652 families which comprised of 17127 individuals were enrolled in this scheme.

According to Dr Ulhas Jajoo who has nurtured this extra ordinary idea,"The whole Jowar Health Assurance Scheme experiment is an ongoing saga in an attempt to identify respected individuals, empower by bringing them together, inculcate a culture of decision making by consensus and initiate acts of common faith. This ‘one step in the right direction’, stems from the philosophy of ‘think globally and act locally”. The ultimate goal of the Village Assurance Scheme and other programmes is to gain “Gram Swarajya’, as envisioned by Shri Vinoba Bhave- a dream of an ideal society based on principles of freedom and fraternity, wherein the poor and the downtrodden are embraced and empathized-Antyodaya, leading them from darkness to light-Tamsoma Jyotirgamaya!"

  • Last Modified: Friday 08 December 2023, 06:38:02.

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