Mumbai 4 civic hospitals abruptly dropped from MPJAY scheme, BMC health panel orders probe

Mumbai: The health committee has ordered an inquiry into the delinking of four civic-run hospitals from the Mahatma Jyotiba Phule Jan Arogya Yojana (MPJAY) without prior notice. The committee has asked the government to restart the scheme within 15 days or else face an agitation.

The health scheme has been suspended in Bhabha Hospital (Kurla), M T Agarwal Municipal General Hospital (Mulund), V N Desai Hospital (Santacruz) and Mahatma Phule Hospital (Vikhroli) in Mumbai. Under the MPJAY scheme, below poverty line and above poverty line ration cardholders are provided with a cashless insurance cover for treatment up to `1.5 lakh and cashless insurance for hospitalisation expenses.

According to sources, around 1,000 patients are enrolled under the MPJAY and over 3.5 lakh procedures are conducted annually. Raising the issue at the health committee meeting, Dr Saeeda Khan said the health insurance scheme was benefitting the poor, until it was abruptly suspended in the four civic hospitals.

“I have written a letter to Sudhakar Shinde, the CEO of MPJAY. The hospital administration is giving us vague replies. The government should restart the scheme in these hospitals within 15 days or we will launch an agitation against the government’s decision,” she said.

Meanwhile, hospital authorities cite the ongoing renovation work in the four hospitals as the reason for the delinking.  “Due to the renovation work in the four hospitals, the scheme has been suspended for a few months. But we plan to restart it as soon as possible so that the poor patients do not suffer,” said Dr Pradeep Jadhav, head of the peripheral hospitals.

Archana Bhalerao, the civic health committee chairperson, said, “We would like to thank Dr Saeeda Khan for raising this issue. We will conduct an inquiry to find out how a health insurance scheme was suspended without informing the civic administration.”

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