ISSN (Print) - 0012-9976 | ISSN (Online) - 2349-8846

Arnab MukherjiSubscribe to Arnab Mukherji

Rashtriya Swasthya Bima Yojana

A study conducted of the Rashtriya Swasthya Bima Yojana in 2009-10 in Amaravati district of Maharashtra shows that there are critical concerns in the very design and implementation of the programme that may make it challenging for RSBY to reach its target of below the poverty line population. Thus, the poor in the more remote blocks and villages may be ignored for easier to reach potential enrollees as the premia paid for all are the same. Empanelled hospitals tend to be placed near district headquarters, raising costs of access for the poor beyond that covered in the programme and packages do not recognise treatment and care uncertainties that incentivise hospitals to treat simpler and less complicated diseases. Additionally, a lack of adequate planning for change in insurance providers creates breaks in service that are avoidable. In spite of these shortcomings users rate this programme highly and this underlies the importance of providing access to a functional healthcare system to the poor.

Accessing Institutional Finance: A Demand Side Story for Rural India

Under the Reserve Bank of India's "financial inclusion" campaign, the provision of institutional finance has been progressing at differential rates across the country. However, when we pair administrative banking data on availability of bank branches in a state with the All India Debt and Investment Survey (2002-03) capturing both institutional and non-institutional borrowing by households, we find that states with the most access to institutional finance, or supply, are not necessarily the ones with the most demand for finance. Looking at household level data within each state we identify determinants of institutional borrowing, and some of the strongest predictors for accessing institutional finance. A number of empirical regularities emerge in terms of the importance of having assets like land for borrowing, which undermines the basic philosophy of financial inclusion.
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