A paper by Sama, Health Insurance: Evaluating the Impact on the Right to Health (Working paper) based on a recently concluded study / review of CHI / SHI schemes in India, was disseminated. The findings of the study suggest the paucity of systematic reviews and comparative assessments undertaken to either test the assumptions underlying the expansion of health insurance across India or to examine the core contents of the right to health; they challenge claims of insurance as impacting equity, access, utilization, financial protection and quality. (Authors: Dr Anuj Kapilashrami and Deepa Venkatachalam).
Another paper, The Rashtriya Swasthya Bima Yojana (RSBY) experience in Chhattisgarh: What does it mean for Health for All? authored by Dr Madhurima Nundy (PHRN), Dr Rajib Dasgupta (JNU), Kanica Kanungo (PHRN), Sulakshana Nandi (PHRN and Chaupal) and Dr Ganapathy Murugan (PHRN) is being published by Sama.
The paper based on six studies of RSBY in Chhattisgarh questions the ‘tendency to pass off health insurance as Health for All’ and highlights the shortcomings in the design, constraints faced by public and private providers, and a range of beneficiary related issues. It discusses how the reach of RSBY is unfulfilled as a large proportion of the vulnerable population still remains out of its ambit due to low enrolment rates even as evidence of experience among those enrolled points to high out-of-pocket expenditures. Discussed in the frame the Right to Health, these issues gain further significance.