Healthcare has become one of India’s largest sectors - both in terms of revenue and employment. Healthcare comprises hospitals, medical devices, clinical trials, outsourcing, telemedicine, medical tourism, health insurance and medical equipment. India has a wide system of health care and is the first choice of foreign public due its low price and high quality in private hospitals. But despite this, India is lagging behind in terms of health care if we talk about quality, accessibility and affordability for the domestic public.
Health care in India despite of being in such demand is prone to a large number of challenges. First one being the unaffordability and inaccessibility. Lack of adequate coverage by the health care system in India means that many Indians turn to private healthcare providers, although this is an option generally inaccessible to the poor. To help pay for healthcare costs, insurance is available, often provided by employers, but most Indians lack health insurance, and out-of-pocket costs make up a large portion of the spending on medical treatment in India.
Another point that is lacking here is quality. When we talk about lack in quality we can point out the health care available in the rural areas of the country. Shortage of doctors, availability of expired medicines are some examples that can be attributed to this. Expensive medication is another issue. Doctors usually charge high fees and are often involved unfair practices which becomes a threat for any patient.
What's the government's role?
Is there anything the government can do about it? Yes! First and foremost step being to work on poor sanitation, providing fresh drinking water and implementing proper wastage disposal. Not only this, increasing the number of doctors, nurses and pharmacists to overcome the shortage of medical personnel in hospitals is another solution. Another point of consideration is implementing a regulatory body for timely inspection of the work by the doctors so that unfair practices can be minimised. Yet another point of consideration is providing free medicines and organising free health campaigns in rural areas in order to improve the reach of health care. Taking initiatives for providing education related to healthcare in various institutions and schools is another option.
It is high time that health care should not be considered as a medium of revenue making but as a way to promote social welfare.