In an attempt to expedite the coverage of Ayushman Bharat health insurance scheme, the National Health Authority is set to auto-approve gold (beneficiary identification) cards through a computerized verification system replacing the current manual approval through state health agencies. This week, the NHA set a record by registering the highest number of hospital admissions as well as generating maximum number of gold cards on a single day so far since the launch of the scheme. On Tuesday, as many as 15,372 hospital admissions were registered, bringing the total to more than 10.80 lakh beneficiary admissions under Pradhan Mantri Jan Arogya Yojana (PMJAY). This was topped up on Wednesday with NHA issuing 4.63 lakh Gold Cards, the highest so far on a single day.
Despite this, the data shows only 1.24 crore cards have been issued so far, which means the scheme has reached out to around 5 crore beneficiaries against a target of 50 crore. “We are planning to roll out auto-approval from next week and hoping that this will fast-track issuance of beneficiary e-cards. Right now it is done manually by the state health agency and since they have to be very cautious with the verification process, it takes time. We have developed this software which will help us reach beneficiaries faster,” NHA chief executive Indu Bhushan said. The authority is also planning to partner with service aggregators like Uber and Zomato to spread awareness about the scheme. – TOI