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A few years back, the healthcare system in India was really poor. Lack of treatment, unawareness, and unavailability of medical facilities were some of the causes of death. We have a few statistics that will show the earlier image of the Indian healthcare system.
- In India, 1.4% of GDP is spent on health, which is less than that of Nepal and Sri Lanka’.
- 70 % of the overall household expenditure on health in India is on medicines.
- Over 469 million people in India do not have essential medicines
- Close to 63% of healthcare centers do not have an operation theatre. Also, many medical centers lacked labor rooms.
- According to the National Sample Survey, around 58% of Indians in rural areas and 68% in urban areas use private facilities for inpatient care.
- One-fourth of the Indian population is suffering from heart diseases and stroke, which is the biggest killer.
- 23% of the population can’t afford treatment as the treatment cost is high.
- Around 55milions of the Indian population were pushed into poverty in one year because of unaffordable medical treatments.
National Health Schemes
To overcome these circumstances, the government of India has launched many schemes under National Health Mission. Let’s discuss some of these schemes:
1. Reproductive, Maternal, Newborn, Child and Adolescent Health (RMNCH+A)
This healthcare program addresses the main cause of mortality among women and children. This scheme also focuses on the delay in accessing and utilizing health care. Many new initiatives have been introduced under this scheme, such as Score Card to track health performance, National Iron Plus Initiative for anemia control among 6 months onwards population, and early detection of defects in children, diseases, and deficiencies among children and adolescents.
2. Rashtriya Bal Swasthya Karyakram (RBSK)
RBSK focuses on four D’s, which include Defects at birth, Deficiencies, Diseases, and Development delays including disability. This initiative aims at the early detection of diseases in newborns to 18 years old.
3. The Rashtriya Kishor Swasthya Karyakram
This program was launched on 7th January 2014 with the Peer Education Programme as a major component. The key principle of this program is adolescent participation and leadership, Equity and inclusion, Gender Equity and strategic partnerships with other sectors and stakeholders. This program enables all adolescents in India to understand their full potential by making responsible decisions related to their health and well-being.
4. Janani Shishu Suraksha Karyakaram
The government of India launched this program to motivate people to opt for institutional deliveries rather than home delivery. JSSK was introduced to ensure that the benefits of this scheme would reach every needy pregnant woman.
5. National AIDS Control Organisation
This program was set up so that every HIV patient could get quality and timely care. NACO tries to improve access and accountability of the services by collaborating with NGOs, women’s self-help groups, faith-based organizations, and other social organizations.
6. National TB Control Programme
The government of India introduced a tuberculosis control initiative intending to achieve TB free India. Under this program, the government provides free diagnosis and treatment to all TB patients.
These are some of the initiatives taken by the government of India with the vision to achieve disease-free and healthy India. The list of initiatives taken up by the government is huge. It also includes Pulse Polio, National Tobacco Control Programme, Rashtriya Swasthya Bima Yojana and more.
In the current scenario, the picture has changed completely. We can see an improvement in our healthcare system. Let us celebrate this Independence Day with pride.