He had submitted his application in February and had been asked to report to the center on May 9. But staff at the registration center were inundated with requests as the old man wondered if he would be able to pick him up at the end of the day.
Each district has a registration center at the district collection office where beneficiaries can apply for health insurance cards. The government introduced the health insurance scheme during the tenure of former Chief Minister M Karunanidhi in 2009. It was extended to CM’s comprehensive health insurance scheme by Jayalalithaa in 2012.
Health coverage has been upgraded from Rs 1 lakh to 5 lakh covering various procedures. During the period, health insurance was found to be very useful by common people.
But the registration has accumulated a heavy backlog due to server problems last year. “The minimum waiting period is three months for an application to be processed. I accompanied a relative who was asked to come in August,” said SDPI party public relations officer Sikandar.
When the District Collector Dr. Aneesh Sekhar was asked about the excessive delay at the registration center, he said that the center generates the registration number in case of emergency. Beneficiaries can retrieve the number and perform life-saving surgeries. They don’t have to wait for the card, he says. Enrollment center officials said they deal with regular recipients and patient applicants.
Last year’s server issue has been resolved and they are handling at least 60 recipients per day, half of which are patient applicants. “Madurai being a large district, beneficiaries arrive for registration from distant places such as Peraiyur, Elumalai and T Kallupatti.