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In News:


  • Union Cabinet has approved the restructuring of National Health Agency as the National Health Authority for better implementation of Pradhan Mantri – Jan Arogya Yojana.

Pradhan Mantri – Jan Arogya Yojana (PM-JAY):

  • PM-JAY is being described as the world’s largest health insurance scheme.
  • It is a cashless and paperless access to health services up to Rs. 5 lakhs per year to poor and vulnerable people identified as per the socio-economic caste census.
  • PM-JAY completed 100 days of implementation on 31st December 2018. So far, 41.5 lakh e-cards have issued to the beneficiaries with more than 6.95 lakh beneficiaries having availed services under PM-JAY through a network of 16,157 empaneled (and in process) hospitals, amounting to the tune of Rs. 924 crores.

National Health Authority:

  • The National Health Authority shall have full autonomy, accountability and the mandate to implement PM-JAY through an efficient, effective and transparent decision-making process.
  • The existing multi-tier governance structure has been replaced with a Governing Board (GB) chaired by the Minister of Health and Family Welfare with representation from the Government and domain experts.
  • The government said that creation of the National Health Authority will lead to more effective implementation of PM-JAY as it will align the accountability with responsibility.
  • With the authority, faster decision-making will be done, as the multi-layered structure has been simplified and the role of the Authority has been clarified.
  • Availability of quality services will be there as the Authority will be able to specify treatment protocols and enforce their compliance.
  • Government said that there will be reduction in leakages as the Authority will have stronger mandate to prevent, detect and control frauds and abuse and redress grievances.
  • Government is also looking at increase in private sector investment in healthcare services, as the Authority will have the clear mandate to be a strategic purchaser and be able to set appropriate rates.

Prelims Question:
Who will Chair the governing body of the national health authority?
a. secretary, MoHFW
b. minister, MoHFW
c. health sector expert chosen by the govt
d. prime minister

Mains Question:
Examine the creation of national health authority and list the advantages of such authority.

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