PBS – Pakistani Program Offers Affordable Health Insurance to Help Urban Poor
May 23, 2011 – One program in Pakistan is attempting to combat urban poverty, the root of many Pakistanis’ problems, by providing affordable health insurance. Special correspondent Saima Mohsin reports from the nation’s largest city, Karachi.
An excerpt from the transcript: The private sector serves nearly 70 percent of Pakistan’s population. Yet, out of the estimated 40 million low-income families here, 99.3 percent of them don’t have health insurance.
The introduction of Naya Jeevan in Pakistan hopes to change that. This new program is simple and affordable for employers, sponsors and beneficiaries. The equivalent of just $2.50 a month provides access to private health care and, crucially, regular health checks for contagious or infectious diseases as a preventive measure for a country that is still battling polio, malaria and hepatitis.
And hundreds of local companies, restaurants and multinational corporations are signing up for the plan for their low-income employees.
Link to podcast, transcript and video: http://www.pbs.org/newshour/bb/world/jan-june11/pakistanhealth_05-23.html