India’s public health spend is only 1.28% of its GDP, says report

HARSH VARDHAN
Union Minister for Health & Family Welfare Dr Harsh Vardhan. File Photo

New Delhi (NVI): India’s public expenditure on health is only 1.28 per cent of its GDP (2017-18 BE) while the rising cost of treatment has led to inequity in access to health care services in the country, a government report says.

“The cost of treatment has been on rise in India and it has led to inequity in access to health care services… Per capita public expenditure on health in nominal terms has gone up from Rs 621 in 2009-10 to Rs 1657 in 2017-18,” the National Health Profile 2019 says.

“The Centre: State share in total public expenditure on health was 37:63 in 2017-18,” the report says.

On the health insurance, the report says that it is a growing segment. Yet, it hasn’t taken off fully and several measures are needed to improve and expand insurance coverage, the report said.

The advent of private insurers in India saw the introduction of many innovative products like family floater plans, top-up plans, critical illness plans, hospital cash and top up policies.

Ayushman Bharat Mission- National Health Protection Mission or Pradhan Mantri Jan Arogya Yojana (PMJAY) world’s largest health scheme announced in the Union Budget 2018-19 is the latest initiative in expanding the health insurance net and targets 10 crore poor and deprived rural population.

The Mission aims to provide a cover of Rs.5 lakh per family per year for secondary and tertiary care procedures.

The total number of registered Allopathic Doctors (up to 2018) is 11, 54,686. Number of Dental Surgeons registered with Central/State Dental Councils of India up to 31.12.2018 was 2,54,283.

There is an increasing trend in number of Dental Surgeons registered with Central/State Dental Council of India from 2007 to 2018.Total number of registered AYUSH Doctors in India as on 01.01.2018 was 7,99,879.

It has been observed that the non-communicable diseases dominate over communicable in the total disease burden of the country.

In a recent report of India Council of Medical Research (ICMR), titled India: Health of the Nation’s States: The India State-Level Disease Burden Initiative(2017), it is observed that the disease burden due to communicable, maternal, neonatal, and nutritional diseases, as measured using Disability-adjusted life years (DALYs), dropped from 61 per cent to 33 per cent between 1990 and 2016.

In the same period, disease burden from non-communicable diseases increased from 30 per cent to 55 per cent.

The epidemiological transition, however, varies widely among Indian states: 48% to 75% for non-communicable diseases, 14% to 43% for infectious and associated diseases, and 9% to 14% for injuries. In recent years India has made ground-breaking progress in reducing the maternal mortality ratio (MMR) by 77% from 556 per 100000 live births in 1990 to 130 per 100000 live births in 2016.

The Urban-Rural divide traditionally seen in institutional births has been largely closed. Overall 75% of rural births are now supervised as compared to 89% in urban areas.

-sb