The Insurance Regulatory and Development Authority (IRDA) of India has asked all health insurance providers to expand the reach of cashless treatment facility by roping in more number of hospitals for the services.

The cashless facility is being offered by insurers by the Preferred Provider Network (PPN) of hospitals who agreed to offer treatment at given rates for specified procedures. This is facilitated by the third party administrators (TPAs).

The IRDA’s circular directing insures to tie-up with "sufficient'' number service providers for cashless treatment facility was issued following a directive from High Court in response to a petition which said the scope of PPN network of insurers remains very limited.

For example, in Mumbai, cashless facility is only provided at 250 hospitals/clinics out of a total of 3,000 hospitals.