Indian Govt. proposes Free Medicine for all!


I happened to read a report that appeared in ToI yesterday which says that Indian Government is considering Free Medicine for all initiative, especially for poor and needy people. This scheme will be offered through Public Hospitals and health facilities across the country.

Prima Facie, this is an excellent initiative if Government is able to execute it well. To avail this facility, citizens will have to procure a National Health Entitlement card (NHEC), that will guarantee access to  primary, secondary and tertiary healthcare fully funded by the Centre.

There will be fixed level of healthcare services under national health package offered by center, but state governments are free to add additional services. The health package will focus on the most common and high-impact healthcare requirements only.

free healthcare

From citizens perspective, they will not be able to avail additional services just by paying a difference. This is to ensure that people who can afford to pay from their pocket or with their insurance services do not take advantage of this initiative. This initiative is primarily targeted at people who cannot afford medical facilities or insurance to pay for healthcare.

Some countries like U.K have very similar model called NHS (National Health Service),  where free medical facilities are provided to to their residents.

In India too, currently, comprehensive health care facilities are provided free of cost to the Central Govt. employees and pensioners and their dependents  under “Central Government Health Scheme” (CGHS). Every person covered under this scheme has a CGHS card, that entitles them for free healthcare facilities. It looks like the proposed National Health Entitlement card (NHEC) will also be based on similar lines.

Panel setup for this purpose calculated that 52% of the patients across India will take benefit of this scheme. This scheme will put a additional load of Rs 28,675 crore during the 12th Plan period.

If implemented successfully, this new initiative will surely usher a new era in Indian Healthcare space!

What do you think?

  1. Celebritynewscast Cast says

    citizens will have to procure a National Health Entitlement card (NHEC), that will guarantee access to primary, secondary and tertiary healthcare fully funded by the Centre.<a href= > AUGMENTIN </a>.

  2. siddhartha sinha says

    If this thing would happen a big revolution would be there.

  3. Rohit says

    Great Initiative! Many poor persons die just because they don’t have money to buy medicines. If implemented correctly, then it is going to be a boon for the poor.

  4. Stocks Tips Intraday says

    At least Government has some plans for common man otherwise I was thinking that there were any policy paralysis surviving in the country.
    Initiative is too good but need very strict implementation otherwise this project will also fail like other gov. projects.
    But I am optimistic about it.

  5. S S PANDA says

    I think just like MNREGA ONLY 10% OF THE MONEY SPENT WILL GO TO THE NEEDY.Rest 90% will be looted as usual by Netas & Bureacracy.Only the burden will increase on the honest tax payers who will have to bear this type of populist measures .In India it is not possible to withdraw subsidies once implemented.

  6. Shankar NS says

    One, this is a huge money scamming initiative, just imagine the thousands of crores that need to be spent on this initiative.
    Two, it won’t be implemented, or will be limited to giving patients 2 tabs of crocin and advising bed rest.
    Three, going by the level of healthcare at govt hospitals today, I will go here only if I don’t value my life any more.

  7. Vivek Stanley says

    Sounds unsustainable.
    And it uses NHEC? Why not UID?

    1. Arun Prabhudesai says

      @vivek – Check out the latest post that I have published on UID. Probably that is the reason?

  8. ghosh says

    Excellent initiative but given the current state of Govt finances, not sure whether it can be executed. Also it needs to implemented in a very transparent manner or it surely going to trip up against corruption allegations

  9. Anamica Dutta says

    Free Medicine amazing…it will be very nice…

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