Initiative: HEAL (Health Enabled Actions for Life)
HEAL is an initiative to support the individuals and families infected and affected by COVID-19. COVID-19 can result in prolonged illness and persistent symptoms, like strokes and seizures, even in young adults with no existing medical conditions or history of hospitalization. On the other hand, as the pandemic unraveled across all states in the country, so did the high costs of private healthcare. Although the treatment at public medical facilities is free, the quality of care varies greatly among states. This poor quality of medical care drives desperate patients towards private hospitals. Despite this, 85.9% of India’s rural population and 80.9% of its urban population have no health insurance. The few that do have insurance face various
difficulties to claim them, such as claim denial, low awareness of the process and procedures, partial claim/refund approvals from the insurance companies, delay in approvals, etc. This results in unexpected out-of-pocket expenditures despite having health insurance. These issues often resulted in people approaching the traditional/local money lenders for loans with a high rate of interest to pay their medical bills and to meet their immediate essential needs. The economic and social disruption caused by the pandemic has been devastating and pushing people into uncertainty and poverty.
In this regard, the Covid Action Collaborative (CAC) came forward to mitigate the challenges faced by individuals and families affected by COVID-19. CAC proposes the following interventions;
- Provide integrated post COVID-19 recovery (physical+mental health ) assistance and capacity building on self care for COVID-19 infected and family as caregivers.
- Support COVID-19 affected people to overcome financial burden through facilitating soft loans with an affordable interest rate.
- Enable COVID-19 affected people to access insurance schemes/claims through grievance redressal mechanisms.
The key principles of the impact canvas being people centric, and to thrive towards recovery and resilience.
The Coalition is being piloted in two locations in India, Karnataka and Hyderabad, and aims to scale nationally by creating local champions and leveraging learnings from the pilot.