Wednesday, February 11, 2009

India sells poor man's Smart Card to the world

India sells poor man's Smart Card to the world: "India's health insurance plan for the poor is all set to go global. Impressed by Rashtriya Swasthya Bima Yojna (RSBY), a cashless, paperless health insurance scheme for those below poverty line (BPL) in India, the world community now wants to emulate this social security network.

Venezuela, Georgia, Chile, Bangladesh, Nepal and Pakistan want to emulate RSBY after Indian officials made an impressive presentation of the 'path-breaking' trend at the World Bank's annual development forum meeting in Washington.

European countries too were looking at the scheme. They were more impressed by its cashless aspect.

Under the scheme, beneficiaries are issued a bio-metric Smart Card for cashless transaction of up to Rs30,000 and they don't have to pay anything while seeking medical treatment. The Smart Card carries a unique identification number, which makes the person eligible for life and disability cover, health benefits, old age protection or any other benefit decided by the government. About 5 lakh cards have been issued in 16 states so far and over 1,500 have benefited from the scheme."

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