Touted as the world’s largest health insurance scheme, the Indian government’s Ayushman Bharat programme was never going to be easy to implement. The team tasked with its roll out knew this when it was first announced in February 2018. How would the Centre convince states, especially those which already had similar schemes in place, to come on board? After all, why should a state that is already successfully running a health insurance scheme adopt the Centre’s more elaborate version?
the more things change, the more they stay the same
Cracks show after just a month of Ayushman Bharat
The Centre has most states on its side. Hospitals and insurers though, remain reluctant. But even if they all came onboard, the world's largest health insurance scheme may still struggle
The Centre has convinced all states barring three to implement its ambitious Ayushman Bharat scheme
However, vital stakeholders such as hospitals and insurers feel shortchanged
While states have found ways around the need for insurers, only 14,000 hospitals have empanelled thus far
But even if all hospitals sign on, is India’s healthcare infrastructure enough to meet the demand created by the scheme?