Devbrat Patnaik

Bhubaneswar: At the launch of universal health coverage scheme- Biju Swasthya Kalyan Yojana (BSKY) in Odisha on I-Day last year, CM Naveen Patnaik had stated, "Healthy Odisha - Happy Odisha. Let us continue our endeavour to build a prosperous and strong state." Contrary to the claims of Odisha government, around 300 nursing homes in the state that were empanelled along with all government hospitals under the BSKY have stopped providing healthcare services under the scheme.

Indramani Jena, Secretary of the All Odisha Private Medical Establishment Forum (AOPMEF) informed that all the nursing homes stopped providing medical services under BSKY citing pending dues to the tune of Rs 25-30 crore to the hospitals since 2017. The Forum also mentioned that the nursing home association has expressed displeasure over failing to meet Odisha Health Minister Naba Kishore Das in this regard.

Jena said, "Before the Biju Swasthya Kalyan Yojana, Rastriya Swasthya Bima Yojana was functional in the State. The State government had then signed an MoU stating that funds would be provided within 15 days. However, the pending dues in every establishment now amounts to Rs 20-30 lakh. And the total pending dues could be over Rs 30 crore, we are not sure. Accordingly, we had written to the State government requesting them to clear the dues and revise the cost. The government seems to be least bothered to hold discussion in this regard."

"For the time being, we have stopped the services under BSKY, but we have requested the government to address the issues for a resumption. We do not want to trouble the patients," added Jena.

In a letter to Odisha Health Minister Naba Kishore Das, President of AOPMEF Ajoy Mishra mentioned, "Several applications for renewal/fresh registration of clinical establishments are pending with the government. Lack of decisive steps, absence of definite rules and guidelines for a long time and in-coordination among multiple government departments have resulted in this unprecedented situation."

"It was therefore decided to withdraw from insurance-based health schemes of the State forthwith for the time being. Considering the urgency, we seek your appointment with a joint delegation of AOPMEF and Indian Medical Association, Odisha at an early date so that registration as well as two other major issues of clinical establishments can be addressed within a fixed time frame," stated Mishra in the letter to Health Minister.

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