Social Health Insurance Scheme of the government has been implemented in all 77 districts. The programme, launched in 2015, has now been implemented across the country.

The objective of the programme is to ensure people's access to quality health care services. The programme will be launched in six districts - Taplejung, Dolakha, Bara, Sarlahi, Manang and Mustang - on April 7 and then in Kathmandu and Lalitpur respectively, according to the Board's senior health administrator Dr Madhav Lamsal.

Under this scheme, a family with up to five members has to pay Rs 3,500 to get medical treatment, including medicines worth Rs 100,000 in total. The service is available at health facilities fixed by the government. A family with more than five members has to add Rs 700 per member to be entitled to the insurance coverage from Rs 20,000 to Rs 200,000.

The government has listed 375 health facilities - government and private - across the country for providing services under the programme.

Still, many people are outside the coverage of health insurance as they lack information about the government scheme. He said programmes to expand coverage of health insurance scheme have been introduced to give easy access to health services to more citizens.

The health insurance scheme is operated in 69 districts at present and only 1,710,962 people have bought this policy. Among these people, only 1,430,000 have benefited from the insurance scheme Seventy per cent of those, who have bought the health insurance policy, renewed their policy this fiscal year.

A version of this article appears in the print on March 30, 2021, of The Himalayan Times.