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Out-of-pocket (OOP) payments continue to be the dominant source of health care financing in India
Despite being enrolled in Rajiv Gandhi Jeevandayee Arogya Yojana (RGJAY) more than three fifths of the beneficiaries still incurred OOP payments when admitted in the hospital
 
The public health spending in India has been hovering around 1% of gross domestic product (GDP), and it contributes only 28% of total health expenditure. Hence, out-of-pocket (OOP) payments continue to be the dominant source of health care financing in India. However, the latest health insurance scheme to improve matters is the Rajiv Gandhi Jeevandayee Arogya Yojana (RGJAY), launched by the Government of Maharashtra in 2012. A Tata Institute of Science (TISS) study has been done to assess the extent to which RGJAY protects the families from making OOP expenditure, while availing the tertiary care from the RGJAY accredited facilities, according to a research note from TISS. 
 
For the year 2014-2015, according to the RGJAYS, premium was paid for 21.9 million households. In other words, 85% of the population is currently covered by the scheme, says the research note.
 
Despite being enrolled in RGJAY, more than three fifths (63%) of the beneficiaries still incurred OOP payments for services when admitted in the hospital, and more worryingly, it was found that a significantly higher proportion of persons from Below Poverty Line (BPL) families (88.23%) reported paying for diagnostics, medications, or consumables, observed the research note.
In the TISS sample, 61% of the beneficiaries accessed services from private hospitals and 39% from public hospitals. In private hospitals, of those who availed services, 63% of them were orange ration card holders and only 37% were yellow ration card holders. The researchers observed a reverse trend in public hospitals wherein 53% of the beneficiaries were yellow ration card holders and 47% were orange ration card holders. Among the hospitalised cases, cardiac and cardiothoracic surgery and cardiology together accounted for 46% of the disease burden, observes the research note.
 
The OOP expenditure on diagnostics was 39.2% and on medicines it was 38.7%. This was quite substantial in absolute terms as well as a proportion of total OOP payments, rues the research note.
 
Thus the RGJAY has been only partially successful on tackling the OOP burden of patients.
 

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Cabinet nod to disinvest 10 percent stake in Coal India
The union cabinet on Wednesday approved a further divestment of 10 percent government stake in Coal India Ltd. (CIL).
 
"The disinvestment of 10 percent stake in Coal India Ltd. was one of the major cabinet decisions today (Wednesday)," Coal and Power Minister Piyush Goyal told reporters here after the meeting.
 
"The terms and time of the divestment will be decided by the finance ministry and the department of disinvestment," he added.
 
The government hopes to raise around Rs.23,000 crore to Rs.24,000 crore through this stake sale.
 
"The government of India intends to disinvest 10 percent paid-up equity capital (63,16,36,440 shares with a face value of Rs.10 each) of CIL out of its shareholding of 78.65 percent through the offer for sale of shares by the promoters through stock exchanges method as per the Securities and Exchange Board of India rules and regulations," a notice from the department of disinvestment said earlier this year.
 
The Centre has sought bids from merchant banks and selling brokers to take the process forward. It will select five such banks or brokers to manage the issue.
 
The government is also considering allotment of shares to eligible and willing employees of CIL at a discount of up to five percent to the issue, up to a maximum of five percent of the size of the offer for sale.
 
As per the proposal from the disinvestment department, the authorised capital of CIL stands at Rs.8,904.18 crore, which comprises of a Rs.904.18 crore non-cumulative 10 percent redeemable preference shares and Rs.8,000 crore equity shares. The subscribed equity capital as of March 31, 2014, stands at Rs.6,316.36 crore.
 
In January-end, the government sold a 10 percent stake in CIL, which fetched Rs.22,557 crore.
 
A majority of CIL workers went on a one-day general strike in early September to protest the Centre's disinvestment move in the company.
 
Disclaimer: Information, facts or opinions expressed in this news article are presented as sourced from IANS and do not reflect views of Moneylife and hence Moneylife is not responsible or liable for the same. As a source and news provider, IANS is responsible for accuracy, completeness, suitability and validity of any information in this article.

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COMMENTS

Rajendra mandhania

2 years ago

This piecemeal disinvestment reminds of decadent kings,zamindars of British and post independence era when they sold family silver to meet daily expenses or to indulge.

Patanjali says its noodles followed food safety norms
 Baba Ramdev-promoted Patanjali on Wednesday said it has followed all the guidelines and regulations of the Food Safety and Regulatory Authority of India (FSSAI) in the launch of its "atta" instant noodles and other products.
 
"We have followed all rules and guidelines by the FSSAI. We have not disobeyed any of them," said S.K. Tijarawala, spokesperson for Patanjali.
 
"The FSSAI has given us the licence of re-labelling under pasta category and on basis of which we have given contract to various companies to make noodles (for us)," he said in the statement.
 
The remarks come in the wake of a top FSSAI official claiming that Patanjali's instant noodles was launched without its product approval. The authority's chairman Ashish Bahuguna has also been quoted as saying that product approval for pasta cannot apply to noodles.
 
The chairman, however, was not available for comment. Following persistent calls, his office told an IANS correspondent that the chairman "cannot respond to individual queries" and that he had said what he wanted to.
 
The authority did not issue a statement either. But a set of questions was nevertheless forwarded over e-mail to the chairman's office on the subject.
 
Tijarawala said Patanjali had taken a product licence for pasta under the "central category" and that noodles, accordingly, fell under that.
 
Forwarding some documents to IANS purportedly from the food safety authority Tijarawala alluded that by virtue of Licence Number 10014012000266, renewed on October 15 this year and valid till February 21, 2019, a "modified licence" was also issued.
 
He said the pasta sold by Patanjali has already secured the modified licence; this also gave it the right to manufacture noodles as it was only a variant.
 
Patanjali had formally launched its wholewheat instant noodles on Monday.
 
Disclaimer: Information, facts or opinions expressed in this news article are presented as sourced from IANS and do not reflect views of Moneylife and hence Moneylife is not responsible or liable for the same. As a source and news provider, IANS is responsible for accuracy, completeness, suitability and validity of any information in this article.

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