President Pranab Mukherjee said that India needed an effective, affordable and universal health care system supported by strong infrastructure. He was speaking at the inauguration of the Mid-Term Meet 2015 of the National Interventional Council of the Cardiological Society of India on April 4.
President Mukherjee, said, "There are 7 hospital beds per 10,000 population in India, compared to 23 in Brazil, 38 in China and 97 in Russia. In terms of healthcare professionals, we again lag behind the other BRIC countries. Health services in India still suffer from lack of reach and constraints of quality."
Considering that India's public expenditure on health was meager, Mukherjee said that a significant rise in health expenditure was needed to ensure universal health coverage.
"India's per capita government expenditure on health in PPP terms is US Dollar 44, as against 809 in Russia, 474 in Brazil and 236 in China. Considering that we are a sixth of humanity, a significant rise in health expenditure is urgently required to ensure universal health coverage," he said.
There are seven hospital beds per 10,000 populations in India, compared to 23 in Brazil, 38 in China and 97 in Russia. Though schemes like the National Health Mission have improved service delivery, health services in India still suffer from lack of reach and constraints of quality.
A universal health insurance mechanism was the need of the hour. About 216 million people in India had health cover under various health insurance schemes as on March 2014.
"The government needed to bring the uncovered population under the health security net. An insured population will also be a healthy population, which will exhibit a greater propensity to seek education, acquire knowledge and access job opportunities. Good health and fitness of the people will truly be a reflection of our country's progress," he said.