Last Mile ‘Divide’: Barely 20 Per Cent Aware Of Ayushman Bharat In Bihar And Haryana, TN Leads With 80 Per Cent AwarenessA rural hospital in India. (Uriel Sinai/Getty Images)

Centre’s scheme to provide healthcare to the masses is plagued by last mile delivery gaps as awareness about the scheme continues to be limited in states like Bihar and Haryana, Economic Times reports.

A survey by the National Health Authority (NHA) has shown that awareness about the scheme stands at less than 20 per cent in Bihar which recently faced the brunt of an acute encephalitis syndrome (AES) outbreak. Same was the case with Haryana while the state of Tamil Nadu recorded the highest, 80 per cent awareness about the scheme.

The scheme, which aims to provide Rs 5 lakh annually to over 50 crore people for secondary and tertiary treatment was launched almost a year ago, with a letter from the Prime Minister explaining the benefits.

“We found that letters had reached (targeted beneficiaries), but many of them in Bihar had not even opened the envelopes... because they couldn’t read. In many cases even their beneficiary cards received in post remained unopened. They said they knew it entitled them to something but they could not explain what that was,” a senior official involved in the survey has been quoted as saying in the report.

“We have seen that awareness levels in brownfield states (where there was already a state health insurance scheme in place) are better than greenfield states like Bihar and Haryana (where no scheme before Ayushman Bharat was in place),” NHA CEO Indu Bhushan has said.

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