Providing Karachiites with the National Health Card is something the federal government intends to do, according to officials in the health department, who estimate that it will only cost Rs16 billion yearly to provide the service to permanent residents of the city.
National health ministry officials stated that the facility would assist permanent inhabitants of Karachi and that the program could be established even if the Sindh government refused to participate in the initiative.
It is estimated that the cost of providing health cards to the entire population of Sindh province might reach Rs50 billion each year, according to the experts, who also pointed out that the Sindh government presently has a budget allocation of Rs170 billion for the health sector.
According to authorities from the health ministry, up to 40% of the Karachi population has already benefited from health card services as a result of their permanent presence in other provinces where the plan has already been implemented, including Punjab.
In addition, they stated, “the remaining Karachi population has a right to have access to the health facility.”
They also stated that a network of 700 hospitals is currently connected to the National Sehat Card, and that they intend to connect an additional 300 hospitals from Karachi and other locations to the network in the near future.
It is important to highlight here that Prime Minister Imran Khan had encouraged the Sindh government to implement the health card plan in the province, which was rejected.
“The government of Sindh should develop a health card program in order to provide every household with Rs1 million in health insurance coverage,” he continued.