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Road ministry starts pilot project on cashless treatment of victims in C’garh

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NEW DELHI: The

road transport ministry

on Thursday announced launching a pilot programme to provide “cashless” treatment to all

road crashes

in Chandigarh, which will entitle such victims to get treatment of up to Rs 1.5 lakh and for a maximum of seven days.
Based on the outcome of the pilot programme, expansion of the

cashless treatment

facility to the entire country will be considered, it said. The ministry said the pilot programme is aimed at establishing an ecosystem for providing timely

medical care

to the road crash victims, including during the golden hour (first hour from accident). TOI had on Jan 31 first reported about the govt proposal to cap the amount for cashless treatment.
The

National Health Authority

(NHA) will implement the pilot programme, in coordination with police, hospitals and State Health Agency (SHA). Several studies have found that around half of road deaths can be prevented by providing quick medical care in the first one hour of a crash. In 2022, India recorded the maximum ever 1.68 lakh road deaths.
Sources said an assessment by the ministry has found that average medical expenses in around 97% of road crash cases is approximately Rs 60,000. Only a small number of victims need long hospitalisation and intensive care.

The cashless medical treatment will cover crashes caused by motor vehicles on all types of roads. The

Ayushman Bharat

(PM-JAY) packages for trauma and poly-trauma cases are also being co-opted in this scheme. “Claims raised by hospitals for providing treatment to be reimbursed from the Motor Vehicle Accident Fund. The programme will be implemented through an IT platform combining the functionalities of e-DAR application of transport ministry and Transaction Management System (TMS) of NHA,” govt said.
The road transport ministry has carried out inter-ministerial consultation for the scheme, which was introduced in the Central Motor Vehicle Act in 2019. The scheme will have no burden on the public exchequer as

insurance companies

will bear the expenses. “It will be a fraction of the third party insurance premium they collect from vehicle owners. Reducing fatalities by providing faster medical care will ultimately benefit the insurance firms as their compensation outgo will reduce significantly,” said a government official.

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