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New India, Digital India, Make India, Innovate India in making a ‘Healthy’ India

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India is a country of diversity with 1.3 billion population of which 70 per cent resides in villages and have access to 30 per cent of medical assets of the country. Poverty is a significant issue of the country, despite having one of the fastest-growing economies in the world, clocked at an economic growth of 7.6 per cent in 2015. It is estimated that 23.6 per cent of Indian population, or about 276 million people, live below $1.25 per day.

As Health is a state subject-there is lot of mismatch in states like Kerala and Punjab have best health indicators, while Uttar Pradesh is the poorest as per the NITI Aayog report. Indian government spends approx. 1.5 per cent of its GDP on health sector and mplans to make it 2.5 per cent which is much less than many developing countries while the USA has dedicated 16 per cent of its GDP. India is riddled with very basic public health issues leading to disease burden. Keeping this in mind, Prime Minister Narendra Modi has launched six initiatives: Open Defecation free country by 2019, Swachh Bharat Mission, National Health Policy 2017, Digital India with e-health, medical device manufacturing and door-to-door screening of chronic diseases.

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The healthcare needs holistic approach which depends on multiple factors. The present government has taken many positive steps including launching of National Health Policy 2017 after the gap of 12 years. It has announced many initiatives like health insurance of people who cannot afford basic healthcare and upgrading of health infrastructure.

The regulation of medical devices have been brought out and is applicable w.e.f January 1, 2018 ending uncertainty of medical device manufacturers having global market of 220 billion US dollar. Challenges bring opportunities such as Indian healthcare market is around US$ 100 billion while it is expected to grow US$ 280 billion by 2020. The healthcare IT market is US$ one billion and is expected to grow 1.5 times by 2020. There is requirement of 7 lakh hospital beds which need investment opportunities of 25-30 billion US dollar. We need to bring innovations in hospital planning,devices, diagnostics, drugs and use of technology to reduce healthcare delivery cost and yet quality.

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We failed targets of Health for All by 2000, National Rural Health Mission, and Millennium Development Goals and now launched Universal Health Coverage; its success would depend on providing healthcare facilities and strict accountability. We need to focus on primary health care and customise our healthcare delivery system by learning from experiences of other countries.

The concept of Diagnosis Related Group (DRG) making financial package for group of diseases which is known to patients, providers and third party payors should be considered by improving deficiency found in its execution by the USA.

The various schemes of present government are appreciable but success would depend on strict monitoring, corporate hospitals have high cost and many unethical practices are reported every day in media. Public hospitals to National Rural Health Mission have not delivered as required because of corruption, lack of resources and application of management practices. The need is not old wine in new bottle but strict control in implementation of various schemes launched.

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InnoHEALTH Volume 2 Issue 3 (July to September 2017) –
InnoHEALTH Volume 2 Issue 4 (October to December 2017) –
InnoHEALTH Volume 3 Issue 1 (January to March 2018) –
InnoHEALTH Volume 3 Issue 2 (April to June 2018) –

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