Do Health Camps Make People Healthier? Evidence from an RCT of Health Camps on Usage of RSBY
18 Pages Posted: 27 Jun 2011 Last revised: 9 Jul 2017
Date Written: August 7, 2011
Through randomized control trials, we estimate the impact of three interventions designed to increase awareness and utilization of Rashtriya Swasthya Bima Yojana (RSBY), a government subsidized health insurance program for the poor in India. In the three years since its launch, RSBY has been rolled out to over 80 million individuals yet the program still suffers from low levels of usage among policy holders in some areas. The three interventions -- health camps held at the panchayat level by public and private hospitals, health camps held at the village level by a local NGO, and an independent audit of the enrollment process by a local NGO -- were designed to increase utilization of the scheme by making beneficiaries more aware of their rights under the scheme and prompting those who need medical attention to use RSBY to receive treatment. We find no effects of the health camp interventions on RSBY claims. Our findings suggest that health camps, as practiced in these two interventions, are not an effective means of increasing utilization of a public health insurance scheme such as RSBY. We are unable to estimate the direct effect of the enrollment audits on claims but find that the site visits by auditors to villages had no impact on claims.
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