Several private hospitals empanelled under the Central Government Health Scheme (CGHS) are reportedly considering a move to stop providing cashless services to beneficiaries.
Several private hospitals empanelled under the Central Government Health Scheme (CGHS) are reportedly considering a move to stop providing cashless services to beneficiaries. Reason: Delays in payment of dues from the government, according to a report by The Indian Express. An association of hospitals is planning to hold meetings this week in four cities to reach a consensus on their participation in the centrally-sponsored scheme, the report said, adding, a hospital in Delhi has already decided to cut-off its association with the scheme. From October 26, Pushpawati Singhania Hospital and Research Institute (PSRI) in Delhi is no more on the CGHS panel.
Girdhar Gyani, director general, Association of Healthcare Providers (India), told IE that CGHS has been defaulting on payments and it has also not revised rates. Gyani said that hospitals will meet in Bengaluru, Hyderabad, Pune and Ahmedabad on October 29 to decide on whether they want to withdraw from CGHS completely, or stop providing cashless services to beneficiaries.
According to Gyani, the government’s inability to keep up with the agreements it has made with hospitals is putting the latter in a “financial unviability”. Because of this, hospital treat CGHS beneficiaries as second or third-grade citizens because payment for their treatment do not come on time.
AHPI represents the majority of healthcare providers in the county. These include Apollo, which had withdrawn from CGHS several years ago, and Max and Fortis, which continue to be on CGHS panel. AHPI says on its website that it works as “not for profit” organization and advocates with the government, regulatory bodies and other stakeholders on issues, which have bearing on enabling its member organizations to deliver appropriate healthcare services to community at large.”
Meanwhile, the Health Ministry is reported to have sent a request for the release of additional Rs 1000 crore for CGHS in next Budget. Most of these funds will be used to clear dues of hospitals, IE quoted a senior official as saying.
CGHS aims to provide medical care to around 35 lakh government employees and pensioners. Cashless services at empanelled hospitals can be availed by pensioners, ex- and sitting MPs, freedom fighters, employees of CGHS employees, Directorate General of Health Services and Health Ministry.