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Centre extends health insurance scheme to Anganwadi workers, helpers

With the move, as many as 13,29,000 Anganwadi workers and 11,79,000 Anganwadi helpers are expected to get a health cover of Rs 50 lakh.

A beneficiary gets his shot of Covid-19 vaccination at an Anganwadi in Mumatpura, Ahmedabad. (Express photo by Nirmal Harindran)

The Centre on Tuesday extended the ambit of the health insurance scheme for frontline to Covid-19 workers to include Anganwadi workers and helpers, officials in the Ministry of Women and Child Welfare said. With the move, as many as 13,29,000 Anganwadi workers and 11,79,000 Anganwadi helpers are expected to get a health cover of Rs 50 lakh.

“The insurance cover will be provided under the Pradhan Mantri Garib Kalyan Yojana and will be retrospective. That is, it will apply from the date that the WHO declared the pandemic – in March 2020,” said an official.

Those eligible for the health cover will include those who worked during the pandemic engaging in – Covid-19 awareness drives, door-to-door ration distribution, community fever surveillance, interacting with families affected by Covid-19 and those who provided support for home quarantine, among others.

“We are grateful to Anganwadi workers and helpers for the work they have done for communities during this time of the pandemic. The insurance will cover all those who have been working as Covid frontline warriors, which the districts will identify. However, since most Anganwadi personnel were involved in Covid activity – we expect it to cover everyone,” said an official.

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Officials added that the approval has been communicated to all states and that it will “now be incumbent upon states to operationalise the scheme”.

Officials also said that the Finance Ministry has notified new schemes under small savings which will now fund the PM Cares for Children Fund for children orphaned by Covid-19.

The Ministry has so far received 3,915 applications on behalf of such children, of which, 845 applications have been verified and approved by respective District Magistrates to receive funds.

First published on: 06-10-2021 at 09:36 IST
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