• Health Insurance Scheme for Jobless Cashew Workers

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    The government of Kerala has launched a new health insurance scheme that provides coverage for jobless cashew workers living in the state. This is the government’s way of reaching out to workers who have lost their jobs as the result of 290 private cashew factories in Kerala going non-operational. This initiative was implemented to protect the lives of workers who face financial difficulties due to their job loss.

    Eligibility for this health insurance scheme

    Since this insurance cover was developed with a specific need in mind, it will provide coverage only to workers who have lost their jobs in the cashew factories. These workers must provide their identity details and enroll in this health insurance scheme. Coverage for this scheme will be based on the socio-economic conditions of the workers who have lost their jobs.

    Key features

    The key features of this proposed health insurance cover can be listed as follows:

    • Insurance coverage under this scheme will be provided by the Comprehensive Health Insurance Agency of Kerala.
    • Workers can enroll themselves in this scheme at the Akshaya centers after getting the certificates from the welfare board inspectors.
    • At the time of registration, the cashew worker must submit various proofs including welfare board card, ESI card, identity proof (ration card), Aadhaar card, etc.
    • This scheme is expected to benefit over 35,000 workers who have lost their jobs after the enactment of minimum wages law by the government.

    Conclusion

    This health insurance cover is a very specific scheme with a specific focus. It has limited coverage in terms of the number of beneficiaries that can be enrolled. The level of coverage offered under this scheme has not been specified yet. It is likely to vary based on the economic conditions of the cashew worker. This plan is started as a relief measure to provide some sort of financial assistance against various medical expenses.

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