PM’s Health Insurance Scheme ready to launch in Punjab

Salim Ahmed

Lahore—Prime Minister’s National Health Insurance Programme would be formally launched in Punjab by the end of September for which all arrangements have been finalized. In the first phase, four districts ie, Rahim Yar Khan, Narowal, Khanewal and Sargodha are included in the Scheme.
In the four nominated districts, 1.3 million families would get free medical facilities under Health Insurance Programme. The Punjab government has allocated Rs.1.5 billion for the scheme which would be spent through the Prime Minister’s National Health Insurance Programme. The district monitoring officers (DMOs) would be recruited to monitor the whole system while in the next phase four more districts would be included in the Scheme including Lahore and Faisalabad.
State Minister for National Health Services, Regulations and Coordination, Saira Afzal Tarar chaired a meeting in Lahore Tuesday, to review the arrangements of launching the Health Insurance Programme in Punjab this month. During the meeting, the launching plan of the scheme in Punjab was finalized.
It was briefed by the CEO Punjab Health Initiative Management Company (PHIMC) that the insurance cards distribution in Rahim Yar Khan has started. The scheme will be officially inaugurated by the end of September in Rahim Yar Khan and within two months, in the remaining three districts the distribution of cards would be completed.
The officers of Ministry of Health from Islamabad, Secretary Specialized Healthcare & Medical Education Punjab Najam Ahmed Shah, Special Secretary Health Dr. Sajid Mahmood Chauhan, CEO Punjab Health Initiative Management Company Dr. Saira Siddique and other concerned officers attended the meeting.
Advisor to Chief Minster Punjab on Health Kh. Salman Rafique said that the Punjab government is planning to provide health cover to all the poor population of the 36 districts of province in coming years.
Initially, the scheme was launched in 15 districts of Islamabad in the first phase and will be expanded to 23 districts in the second phase. Around 1.2 million families will get free healthcare facilities in the first phase.
It may be noted that people of Sindh and Khyber Pakhtunkhwa will not benefit from this scheme because both the governments have declined to become part of the federal government programme.

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