RSBY : Scheme Analysis

Quantitative evaluation of the Rashtriya Swasthya Bima Yojana (RSBY)
  • One of the main objectives of any health insurance scheme is to provide financial coverage (or risk protection) by reducing such burden while enhancing use of healthcare
  • RSBY has not been able to reduce out-of-pocket payment for healthcare for the poor, and they face the catastrophic impact of such payments
 India and RSBY:
  • Outpatient care comprises up to 70% of total healthcare utilization in India and 60% of total health expenditure
  • It has by far been excluded from RSBY coverage
  • Because OP is not covered, people could delay seeking care until they are more severely ill, which is costly both from the perspective of costs and health
  • Despite rising healthcare costs, the scheme continues to be capped at Rs 30,000 since 2008
  • For a family of 4 or 4.5 persons, this is grossly inadequate
Positive impact of the scheme:
  • One positive impact of the scheme was in non-medical spending
  • The poor increased their household consumption level, or non-medical spending, after RSBY intervention
  • This can be called “virtual income transfer”
Other schemes:
  • An evaluation of the Yeshasvini scheme in Karnataka by researchers from Delhi University reported an over 70% reduction in out-pocket spending and a 30% reduction in borrowings
  • Evaluating the Rajiv Aarogyasri scheme in Andhra Pradesh in 2012, the nonprofit think tank Centre for Global Development found reduced inpatient out-of-pocket spending among enrolled families in phase I of the study, but relatively small impacts on outpatient out-of-pocket spending, and catastrophic payments
Basic Information:
Rashtriya Swasthya Bima Yojana (RSBY)
  • RSBY, a tax-financed health insurance that is managed through private insurance companies, was introduced in 2008 for inpatient care to Below Poverty Line (BPL) families
  • The scheme aims to provide health insurance coverage to the unrecognized sector workers belonging to the BPL category and their family members shall be beneficiaries under this scheme
  • Scheme enables them to receive inpatient medical care of up to ₹30,000 per family per year in any of the empanelled hospitals
  • The scheme has won plaudits from the World Bank, the UN and the ILO as one of the world’s best health insurance schemes

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