Swasthya Bima Yojana launched

Under this scheme the labourers get medical benefit of Rs 30,000 per annum.

The scheme was launched at the national level in April 2008. The launch was delayed in the State for administrative reasons for more than one-and-a-half years. Labour Minister B N Bachegowda launched the programme.

The programme will be implemented on a pilot basis in five districts - Bangalore Rural, Belgaum, Mysore, Shimoga and Dakshina Kannada. A below poverty line family of five members can avail benefits of the scheme. The Centre bears 75 per cent of the premium amount, while the state contributes the rest. The beneficiaries get treatment for 725 health problems at designated hospitals, which include both government and private. Besides, each family gets transportation expense of a maximum of Rs 1,000 per year at the rate of Rs 100 per visit to hospital.

The Centre and the State government signed an MoU to implement the project. And, Karnataka government also signed an MoU with National Insurance Corporation, the agency selected through a tender process to execute the project.

Director General of Labour Welfare (GOI) Anil Swarup said the scheme had been implemented in 21 states. Every beneficiary would get a smart card, which will serve as an identity card to avail themselves of the medical benefits.

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