By Okbima 06 May 2024 10

Government Health Insurance Schemes for Senior Citizens 2024


Government health insurance schemes for senior citizens offer help to get healthcare without having to pay a lot of money. It covers hospital visits, doctor's appointments, and medicine. With the Pradhan Mantri Health Insurance Scheme For Senior Citizens, people can get affordable healthcare without worrying about money.


List of 5 Government Schemes for Senior Citizens in India

Here is the List of the top 5 Government Schemes for Senior Citizens in India based on their age criteria, their requirements & accessibility to the best healthcare.

1. Indira Gandhi National Old Age Pension Scheme (IGNOAPS)

The Indira Gandhi National Old Age Pension Scheme (IGNOAPS) was introduced by the Government of India to provide financial assistance to elderly individuals. This scheme was launched in 2007 and aims to ensure a basic level of financial security for senior citizens. 

Features of Indira Gandhi National Old Age Pension Scheme (IGNOAPS):

  • Financial Assistance: The scheme provides a monthly pension to eligible beneficiaries to support their basic needs.

  • Universal Coverage: IGNOAPS covers all states and union territories of India, ensuring nationwide reach.

  • Age Criteria: Eligibility for the pension is at 60 years and above, although some states have variations in age criteria.

  • Income Criteria: Beneficiaries must be below the poverty line (BPL) category to qualify for the pension

  • Gender Neutral: The scheme is open to both men and women, recognizing the financial vulnerability of elderly individuals regardless of gender.

  • Central & State Contribution: The pension amount is contributed by both the central and state governments, with the central government bearing the majority of the cost.


Eligibility Criteria for Indira Gandhi National Old Age Pension Scheme (IGNOAPS):

  • Age: Individuals aged 60 years or above are eligible to apply for the pension.

  • Financial Status: Applicants must fall under the below-poverty line (BPL) category.

  • Aadhaar Card: They should have an Aadhaar card for verification.

  • Pension Application: Submission of a filled application form along with necessary documents is necessary for enrollment.

  • Documentation: Applicants may need to provide proof of age, residence & income status to qualify for the pension.


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2. Varistha Mediclaim Policy

The Varistha Mediclaim Policy is a health insurance scheme for senior citizens aged 60 years and above. This policy offers financial protection for many medical expenses to have peace of mind and quality healthcare for the elderly population.

Features of  Varistha Mediclaim Policy:

  • Sum Insured: The policy offers a sum insured of up to Rs. 5 lakhs which offer comprehensive coverage for hospitalization expenses, including room rent, nursing, and boarding charges.

  • Pre-existing Conditions: This policy covers pre-existing conditions from day one, offering relief to senior citizens with prior health issues.

  • Critical Illness Cover: It provides coverage for critical illnesses, offering financial assistance for treatments such as cancer, stroke, and heart ailments.

  • Cashless Hospitalization: Policyholders can avail of cashless hospitalization facilities at network hospitals, reducing out-of-pocket expenses during medical emergencies.

  • Lifetime Renewability: The policy offers lifetime renewability, ensuring continuous coverage for senior citizens without any age-related restrictions.


Eligibility Criteria of Varistha Mediclaim Policy:

  • Age: Individuals must be citizens of India and aged 60 years or above.

  • Upper Limit: There is no upper age limit for entry into the policy.

  • Pre-existing Conditions: Pre-existing conditions are covered from day one, subject to certain terms and conditions.

  • Medical Screening: Applicants must do medical screening, and acceptance into the policy is subject to the insurer's underwriting norms.


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3. Rashtriya Vayoshri Yojana

The Rashtriya Vayoshri Yojana (National Senior Citizen Scheme) is a government initiative launched in 2017 by the Ministry of Social Justice and Empowerment to improve the quality of life of senior citizens who are from weaker sections. The scheme provides assistive devices and aids to the elderly to help them live an independent life.

Features of Rashtriya Vayoshri Yojana:

  • Free Distribution: Under this scheme, many assistive living devices are distributed free of cost to eligible senior citizens.

  • Assistance Devices: The scheme covers many devices including walking sticks, spectacles, hearing aids, wheelchairs, dentures, and other necessary assistive aids.

  • Quality Assurance: The devices distributed under the scheme are of high quality, ensuring durability and effectiveness.

  • Accessibility: The scheme aims to make these devices easily accessible to senior citizens across India, especially in rural areas.

  • Implementation: Implemented through the CSR (Corporate Social Responsibility) initiatives of public sector undertakings (PSUs) and other corporate organizations.


Eligibility Criteria:

  •  Age Limit: Senior citizens aged 60 years and above are eligible to avail benefits under the scheme.

  • Income Criteria: The scheme targets economically weaker sections, hence individuals with monthly income below Rs. 15,000 are eligible.

  • Priority: Preference is given to senior citizens belonging to Scheduled Castes (SC), Scheduled Tribes (ST), and Other Backward Classes (OBC).

  • No Dual Benefit: Individuals who have already availed similar benefits from any other government scheme are not eligible.


4. Pradhan Mantri Jan Arogya Yojana (PMJAY)

The Pradhan Mantri Jan Arogya Yojana (PMJAY) also known as the Ayushman Bharat Yojana, launched in September 2018 under Pradhan Mantri Health Insurance For Senior Citizens, is a healthcare scheme that aims to provide health coverage to economically weak families. With a vision to ensure accessible and affordable healthcare, PMJAY offers health insurance coverage of up to Rs. 5 lakhs per family per year.

Features of PMJAY:

  • Coverage: PMJAY provides coverage for over 10 crore families, making it one of the largest healthcare initiatives globally.

  • Cashless Treatment: Beneficiaries can avail of cashless treatment in empanelled public and private hospitals across India.

  • Portability: The scheme allows beneficiaries to access healthcare services anywhere in India.

  • No Age Limit: PMJAY does not have any age restrictions, ensuring comprehensive coverage for individuals of all ages.

  • No Cap on Family Size: The scheme covers even large families, with no cap on the number of family members covered.

  • Pre-existing Conditions: PMJAY covers pre-existing conditions from day one of enrollment, ensuring comprehensive healthcare access.

  • No Enrollment Fee: There is no enrollment fee for beneficiaries under PMJAY, making it accessible to all eligible families.


Eligibility Criteria Pradhan Mantri Jan Arogya Yojana (PMJAY):

  • Socio-Economic Criteria: Families listed in the Socio-Economic Caste Census (SECC) database are automatically eligible.

  • Deprivation Criteria: Families meeting deprivation criteria such as households without shelter, destitute, primitive tribal groups, etc., are eligible.

  • Occupational Criteria: Families whose primary income earners are manual ragpickers, domestic workers, street vendors, cobblers, hawkers, construction workers, plumbers, masons, etc., are eligible.

  • Exclusion Criteria: Families having a member who is a government employee or pensioner, income tax payer, owning a two/three/four-wheeler, owning a refrigerator, landline phone, etc., are excluded.


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5. Atal Pension Yojana (APY)

Atal Pension Yojana (APY) is Pradhan Mantri Health Insurance For Senior Citizens which was launched in May 2015 by the Government of India. It aims to offer pensions to citizens of India, particularly those in the unorganized sector, who may not have access to pension schemes. The scheme is administered by the Pension Fund Regulatory and Development Authority (PFRDA) and is available for individuals between 18 and 40 years of age.

Features of Atal Pension Yojana:

  • Guaranteed Pension: APY offers a guaranteed minimum pension from Rs. 1,000 to Rs. 5,000 per month, depending on the contributions made by the subscriber and the age at which they join the scheme.

  • Fixed Contributions: Subscribers are required to make regular contributions towards the scheme until they reach the age of 60. The contribution amount varies based on the chosen pension amount, age at entry, and the number of years left until retirement.

  • Government Contribution: Under the scheme, the Government of India also contributes 50% of the subscriber's contribution, or eligible subscribers will receive either Rs. 1,000 per year or the lower amount, for a duration of 5 years.

  • Flexible Pension Amounts: Subscribers can choose their desired pension amount based on their financial capabilities and retirement needs.

  • Pension to Spouse: In the event of the subscriber's death, the spouse is eligible to receive the same pension amount that the subscriber was receiving, or can choose to exit the scheme with the accumulated corpus.

  • Tax Benefits: Contributions made towards APY are eligible for tax benefits under Section 80CCD of the Income Tax Act, 1961, subject to certain conditions.


Eligibility Criteria of Atal Pension Yojana:

  • Age: Indian citizens between 18 and 40 years of age are eligible to enroll in the Atal Pension Yojana.

  • Bank Account & Aadhar Card: The subscriber must have a savings bank account and a valid Aadhaar card.

  • Statutory Social Security Scheme: The applicant must not be a member of any statutory social security scheme.

  • Unorganized Sector: The scheme is beneficial for those in the unorganized sector, such as maids, drivers, gardeners, etc., who do not have access to pension schemes.


Read More:

Government Health Insurance Schemes in India 2024

Mukhyamantri Chiranjeevi Yojana Rajasthan 2024: Benefits & Eligibility

Best Senior Citizen Health Insurance Plans in India 2024

Mahatma Jyotiba Phule Jan Arogya Yojana (MJPJAY): Benefits, Coverage & Eligibility



In conclusion, a government health insurance scheme for senior citizens is important for their healthcare needs. These schemes protect senior citizens from high medical costs and help them stay healthy. It's crucial to keep supporting and expanding these schemes so all older age people to get good healthcare without money problems. For the best health insurance for senior citizens, you can contact “Our Experts”.


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