In a bid to assure adequate healthcare coverage for women, the Odisha government on Wednesday raised the health cover under Biju Swasthya Kalyana Yojana (BSKY) from Rs 5 lakh to Rs 7 lakh per year. Chief Minister Naveen Patnaik made this announcement while addressing a meeting of Ama Gaon Ama Bikash programme at the State Secretariat in Bhubaneshwar. Calling the move a historic step and first, in the country, CM Patnaik said that the decision was made for the well-being and health of women. He added that it is going to benefit lakhs of women across the state.
In a series of tweets, Patnaik said that the new version of the BSKY is yet another effort by the Odisha government to empower women and make them happy and healthy. The tweet further noted that the government has also provided 50% reservation in Panchayats and have been providing free bicycles and hostels for girls. It also said that from mission Shakti to Mamata and Khushi, Odisha government stands with its women.
The move has come a few days after the state government refused to implement the Centre’s flagship health scheme — Modicare in the state of Odisha.
Odisha State Health minister Pratap Jena recently claimed that the state healthcare scheme, BSKY, is much better than the scheme launched by the Centre. He said that the state health scheme would cover more families than the families that have been included in the Centre’s healthcare scheme. He also informed that the state government preferred to have its own scheme after the Centre denied its proposal to include 70 lakh families of Odisha rather than the 60 lakhs concluded by the NDA-led central government.
The Centre’s mega healthcare project was unveiled by Union Minister Arun Jaitley on February 1, 2018 as a part of the Union Budget. Dubbed as ‘Modicare’, the National Healthcare Protection Scheme (NHPS) was launched with an objective of extending healthcare to 100 million families and to raise the insurance cover per family.