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PACS Impact Assessment on RSBY

10 July 2015 Share: facebook share twitter share
Theme: RSBY Health Insurance Scheme

An Impact Assessment Study on Rasthtriya Swasthya Bima Yojana (RSBY) was commissioned by the Poorest Area Civil Society (PACS) programme to Population Health and Nutrition Research Programme, Institute for Human Development. This study investigates the effectiveness of specific interventions led by PACS to increase the awareness, enrolment, and utilisation of the RSBY scheme in target districts across two States – Jharkhand and West Bengal. The study selected two intervention districts and two districts where there was no PACS intervention to compare the key outcome of PACS interventions.

The RSBY health insurance scheme attempts to insure poor people against shocks from a low level of healthcare security. Launched in 2008 as a flagship scheme of the Government of India RSBY enrols a number of targeted beneficiaries.

A mixed method approach was adopted for the Impact Assessment, using quantitative and qualitative research techniques to reveal the following findings: 

  1. Awareness about RSBY was 80% in non intervention districts and 95% in intervention districts.
  2. RSBY Mitras appointed by PACS in villages motivated the ASHA or AWW to campaign on the RSBY scheme.
  3. PACS interventions promoted specific awareness of the scheme through activities including mike announcements, rallies, drama and wall writing to increase RSBY outreach. This gap was seen in the nonintervention area.
  4. Enrolment under the RSBY scheme since 2010 was high but none had availed any benefits of the scheme due to lack of proper knowledge. 
  5. Marginalised sections of society utilised the RSBY scheme four times more during hospitalisation in the PACS intervention districts. 83% of respondents from the ST community in intervention districts utilised the RSBY scheme for hospitalisation, compared to 22% in the non-intervention districts.
  6. The households reduced their health expenditure by using the RSBY scheme in PACS intervention districts. Families in non intervention districts wanted to use RSBY scheme during hospitalisation but they either did not get leave from work or were far away from health facility sans transportation in non intervention areas. PACS-led initiatives brought families to the health facility and subsequently use of RSBY card for hospitalisation.

Overall the study concludes that a social security scheme like RSBY will get to benifit excluded populations and prove to be more effective with the help and support of interventions led by Civil Society Organisations (CSOs) where a team as committed and qualified as PACS has planned to support it.

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