The Union health ministry is planning to raise the treatment costs at hospitals that are empanelled with the Central Government Health Scheme (CGHS) in a move which will impact its 4.2 million users in the country.
In addition, numerous health service providers have attempted to leave the programme due to unpaid debts owed to private hospitals.
The health ministry has established a commission to assess the fees that are levied against users, who are mainly active and retired central government officials and their families. The new costs might be revealed in the following month.
More than 600 private hospitals are currently affiliated with the CGHS, with major institutions like Medanta, Fortis, Narayana, Apollo, Max, and Manipal serving as its cornerstones.
In a statement, an official said that the increase in the rates will encourage private hospitals to give standard treatments to CGHS patients. The official further added that the government's realisation that the CGHS rates were extremely unreasonable and irrational is a good thing. Many reputable corporate hospitals decided to stop offering CGHS services due to the poor rates. For instance, a senior doctor at a private hospital would charge between Rs 1000 and Rs 1500 in the OPD, but at CGHS, the fee might be as low as Rs 150. Thus, none of the private hospitals will provide care for CGHS beneficiaries at this time.
All of the top executives from private hospitals met with the director general of CGHS in October of last year to discuss the matter of unpaid government dues. According to government statistics, there is a balance of 674.82 crores.
To provide healthcare services to eligible beneficiaries, the health ministry moved the CGHS on the IT infrastructure of the National Health Authority in 2021.
Q1 What is the full form of CGHS?
Central Government Health Scheme
Q2 What are the current charges for CGHS patients in OPD?