Budget 2018: Government to roll out health cover scheme from next fiscal, says Arun Jaitley

By: |
New Delhi | Updated: February 2, 2018 6:31:32 PM

Budget 2018: Finance Minister Arun Jaitley today said the world's biggest health cover plan announced in the Budget will be cashless and not a reimbursement scheme, and promised more funds if required depending on the rollout later next financial year.

FM Arun Jaitley presented Union Budget on 1st February.Budget 2018: The scheme introduced in Budget 2018 was although appreciated by experts also raises apprehension about its implementation and the initial corpus of just Rs 2,000 crore. (IE)

Budget 2018: Finance Minister Arun Jaitley today said the world’s biggest health cover plan announced in the Budget will be cashless and not a reimbursement scheme, and promised more funds if required depending on the rollout later next financial year. The National Health Protection Scheme (NHPS) touted as ModiCare envisaged to provide medical cover of up to Rs 5 lakh to over 10 crore poor and vulnerable families, constituting 40 per cent of total population. “It takes care of hospitalisation, the secondary and tertiary care. Obviously, it will involve various state hospitals and selected private hospitals. It can be on trust model, it can be on insurance model. It’s not on reimbursement model because too many complaints come on the reimbursement model,” he said here.

After Budget 2018 will your income tax go up or down? Find out with this Income Tax calculator

The model is now being worked out between NITI Aayog and Health Ministry, he said adding the date of implementation would be next financial year and sometime in the course of the year it will be worked out. If assuming the model to be insurance led, the premium shrink with the increase in number of policy holders, he said at an event organised by Open magazine. The scheme introduced in Budget 2018 was although appreciated by experts also raises apprehension about its implementation and the initial corpus of just Rs 2,000 crore.

Watch video: Tax takeaways from Budget 2018 for the common man

Assuring that the scheme will be entirely state funded, Jaitley in the Budget 2018 said initial funds of Rs 2,000 crore has been allocated and whatever funds required, as the scheme rolls over, would be made available. “In the coming year, I see more comfortable situation as far as revenues are concerned because the graphs as far as direct tax is concerned would move very fast,” he said. Following demonetisation and implementation of Goods and Services Tax, the number of direct tax assesses have gone up… once anti-evasion measures, I do expect a little bump up in the GST collection also. I don’t see revenue going to be a major challenge in that,” he said.

Also read: Budget 2018: 10 new announcements and key features

Yesterday, Jaitley in the Budget 2018 speech said, “We are all aware that lakhs of families in our country have to borrow or sell assets to receive indoor treatment in hospitals. Government is seriously concerned about such impoverishment of poor and vulnerable families. Present RSBY provide annual coverage of only Rs 30,000 to poor families.” Several state governments have also implemented supplemented health protection schemes providing varying coverage, he had said in the Lok Sabha.

Watch video: Budget 2018: The story of the Budget briefcase | 5 things we bet you didn’t know

The finance minister in Budget 2018 also advocated that the central and the state government can pool in resources for health care to achieve efficiency. He also emphasised on having better hospitals in rural areas even though Tier I and Tier II cities have good hospitals. Setting up of hospitals in various districts is the state subject under the federal structure, he added.

For latest coverage on Budget 2019-20 log on to financialexpress.com. We bring you full coverage of Union Budget 2019 Live. Stay Connected.

Get live Stock Prices from BSE and NSE and latest NAV, portfolio of Mutual Funds, calculate your tax by Income Tax Calculator, know market’s Top Gainers, Top Losers & Best Equity Funds. Like us on Facebook and follow us on Twitter.

Switch to Hindi Edition
FinancialExpress_1x1_Imp_Desktop