The Govt Just Made Aadhaar Mandatory For Cash Benefits To TB Patients
A recent notice from the Union Health Ministry has mandated that those who make use of the government’s cash benefits for the treatment of tuberculosis in the context of the revised National Program against Tuberculosis (RNTCP) s’ fit into the base of Aadhaar data.
Said the Hindu in a report that the diagnosis and treatment of patients would not be affected by Aadhaar, but any request for monetary law for these purposes by patients, hospitals and health workers will require the number. According to ministry officials, the measure is aimed at curbing duplication and false accusations of benefits.
On paper, this may seem like a reasonable step, but it is plagued with problems, the most serious being a lack of awareness of the existence of such benefits in the first place.
But before going into details of the decision, it is worth examining the difficult facts to define the magnitude of the epidemic in India in its context.
An opinion piece in The New York Times Wednesday sums up the realities on the ground by citing striking and sad figures: “Worldwide, 1.8 million patients are tuberculosis deaths in 2015 and about half a million died in India “Say the authors. , Adding that “an astonishing number of Indians – estimated to be infected with TB – over 400 million dollars.”
Despite this alarming scenario and a substantial reduction in tuberculosis eradication budgets over the last two years, India remains hopeful of getting rid of TB in 2025.
Now, the viability of such a possibility, which is now the moment, has been seriously threatened by the imposition by the Aadhaar government of cash benefits disbursed to patients.
Tuberculosis, an airborne disease that affects people across the social spectrum, but its victims usually tend to be the poorest and poorest citizens in the country.
Although the disease can be stopped and finally cured by aggressive treatment and regular treatment over a period of several months, many can not afford a nutritious diet that must complete regular intake of medication.
Cash benefits from a few hundred to a few thousand rupees and will be paid directly to those affected, should help meet these other requirements to fight deadly disease, while the state offers diagnosis, treatment, free and regular check-ups . .
However, migrant workers, who are often mostly vulnerable to illness, are often unable to obtain evidence of proper direction for the Aadhaar registry. And now, without Aadhaar number, they can not guarantee these cash privileges that correspond to them from August 31, 2017.
Even more disturbing is the response of many health workers involved in the well-being of tuberculosis victims. A detailed report on the cable mentions several health campaigns that say they never knew the cash benefits in the first place.
That such an important aspect of treating a deadly disease was not made public by the principle, it is surprising to say the least. Even in terms of disbursement of funds, there seems to be a fog of confusion.
While the government says the RNTCP is run by an online portal called Nikshay, many health care workers have operated out of it until now.
Sunil Khaparde, Deputy Director General for Tuberculosis at the Ministry of Health estimates that 90% of the country’s population is covered by Aadhaar, the same will be reflected in people suffering from tuberculosis.
As noted above, in addition to the practical problems of acquiring a series of Aadhaar, even for those who already have, there are a number of problems to be solved.