The existing healthcare system in India encompasses central and state government owned, financed and operated health institutes, hospitals, maternity homes, medical colleges, community health centers, clinics and dispensaries. The government, however, contain healthcare spending between 1-2% of GDP, which is substantially low compared to developed countries (Yip & Mahal, 2008). The current health facilities are inadequate due to excessive population and rural-urban divide. A significant portion below poverty line couldn’t have access to health facilities amid affordability problem. The state-owned medical facilities somehow fulfill the health requirements of low-income groups through either free or subsidized healthcare services across India (Biswas, 2014).
Gudwani et al (2012) highlight that India is self-sufficient in production of pharmaceutical raw materials and chemicals through indigenous production that facilitates in offering low drug prices. However, India substantially lacks in adequate healthcare infrastructure considering its population needs; therefore, a majority of residents doesn’t have access to quality medical services specifically in rural areas. In addition, a significant majority is also deprived of medical cover and health cover from organizations; however, the government has introduced healthcare reforms to enhance Social Health Insurance (SHI) and Universal Health Insurance Scheme (UHIS) across India (Prinja, Kaur & Kumar, 2012).
Indian government is determined to provide health insurance to a majority of households in both urban and rural centers by 2050. At present, there are only 5% Indians with medical cover. Next, the government aims to eradicate Polio, TB, Hepatitis and other epidemic diseases through public education and cure methods (Jayaraman, 2014).
A significant number of labor is employed in informal sector, which doesn’t provide insurance cover to reduce business expenditures. Another ethical consideration is the private health sector is mostly unregulated so the government must implement specific monitory systems for command and control of private hospitals and medical services providers (Prinja et al, 2012); (Jayaraman, 2014).
Biswas, S. (2014). Atul Gawande: What ails India's public health system. BBC News, Retrieved http://www.bbc.com/news/world-asia-india-30490823
Gudwani, A., Mitra, P., Puri, A. and Vaidya, M. (2012). India Healthcare: Inspiring Possibilities,
Challenging Healthcare. McKinsey & Company
Jayaraman, V. R. (2014). 5 Things to know about India’s Healthcare System. Forbes India, Retrieved http://forbesindia.com/blog/health/5-things-to-know-about-the-indias-healthcare-system/#ixzz3eCQfbqHU
Prinja, S., Kaur, M., & Kumar, R. (2012). Universal Health Insurance in India: Ensuring Equity, Efficiency, and Quality. Indian Journal of Community Medicine : Official Publication of Indian Association of Preventive & Social Medicine, 37(3), 142–149. doi:10.4103/0970-0218.99907
Yip, W. and Mahal, A. (2008). The Health Care Systems of China and India: Performance and Future Challenges. Health Affairs, Vol. 27, No.4, pp. 921-932