The Ex-Servicemen Contributory Well being Scheme (ECHS), launched in 2003 to offer high quality healthcare to ex-servicemen and their dependants, has run into tough climate with them going through issues in acquiring medical remedy regardless of contributing an enormous sum and making month-to-month funds in direction of medical check-up and remedy.
“The introduction of ECHS was a huge relief to several retired defence personnel. However, the supply of substandard medicines, denial of treatment at referral hospitals and mismanagement of funds are causing problems for us,” M.B. Gopinath, State president, Nationwide Ex-servicemen Coordination Committee (NEXCC), informed Bharat.One.
Protest on Nov.15
NEXCC will stage a protest earlier than the ECHS Regional Centre in Kannur on November 15 to boost varied points affecting retired defence personnel and their dependants.
About 426 polyclinics had been opened throughout the nation as a part of the scheme, of which 26 had been in Kerala.
“During the time of retirement, an amount of ₹1.20 lakh is deducted from officers, ₹67,000 from Junior Commissioned Officers and ₹30,000 from other rank officials. Besides, an amount of ₹1,000 is getting deducted from the monthly pension for medical expenses,” Mr. Gopinath mentioned.
The quantity is getting used to fulfill the bills of polyclinics, for the fee of docs and others, and buy of medicines and fee to referral hospitals.
Nonetheless, issues went unsuitable after 2016. There have been delays in funds to referral hospitals. The shortage of medicines and provide of substandard medicines added to the woes of beneficiaries.
Mr. Gopinath alleged that the funds contributed to ECHS had been diverted by the Ministry of Defence for an additional function.
Due to the delay in funds, many referral hospitals refused to simply accept ECHS circumstances. A examine performed by NEXCC in February this 12 months discovered that an quantity of ₹200 crore was pending to be paid to the referral hospitals within the State alone.
The polyclinics are actually referring such circumstances to army hospitals the place there isn’t any specialty remedy. In such circumstances, ex-servicemen are compelled to hunt remedy on their very own.
Kunhi Kannan Kannoth, a retired military official in Kasaragod, lamented that no medication was out there at polyclinics. “Even if we get medicines, the quality is substandard and we have to purchase the same medicine again from medical shops,” he added.