The Indian insurance companies' regulator IRDAI (Insurance Regulatory and Development Authority) has directed insurers to include medical treatment for mental illnesses in health insurance. This comes three months after the Mental Healthcare Act 2017 came into force.
The IRDAI notice issued on 16 August says, "every insurer shall make provision for medical insurance for treatment of mental illness on the same basis as is available for treatment of physical illness." The notification is applicable for all Indian insurance companies with immediate effect.
On May 29, the Mental Healthcare Act 2017, was put into force to protect the rights of those suffering from mental illness during the delivery of healthcare and services.
The National Mental Health Survey of India 2015-16 revealed that over 15 crore Indians needed active interventions for different levels of mental disabilities and their families have to spend up to Rs 1,500 every month just towards treatment and travel.