‘India needs a fresh approach to health sector’


Amartya_Sen, Indian economist and Nobel prize ...

 

18 February 2013

 

statesman news service

 

KOLKATA, 18 FEB: The country needs a “completely fresh approach” to health care Nobel laureate Amartya Sen said today, as an over-reliance on the private sector and lack of commitment from the state means it has gone “really, badly wrong”.

 

At a press conference this evening at the Taj Bengal hotel in Alipore to round off two days of discussions as part of his Kolkata Group workshop ~  an annual brainstorming session on pressing social issues for policymakers and activists ~ Mr Sen said the state needs to express a commitment to universal health care for all.

 

This could come in the form of legislation setting out a right to health, along the lines of the Right to Education Act, he said, although this wouldn’t in itself solve everything. “It alone will not cure the problem, and it will not become a perfect right to health just through the declaration. A number of ancillary things have to happen, including greater allocation of public funds to health care, which are woefully poor now.”

 

While other countries are moving to spend more resources on healt care, India is “totally stationary,” he said. “India is an outlier. I mean very little government commitment on expenditure and delivery.”

 

He said there is also “a very nasty and costly misunderstanding” that private health care can step in to bridge any health services gaps. There are also problems with relying on private medical insurance as a model, he said, pointing to difficulties that some people have been getting coverage if they have pre-existing conditions. “The reliance on private health care and the illusion that that can solve the problem is a major issue,” he said. “No country has been able to have a transition from bad health to good health on the basis of private healthcare.”

 

There are many good doctors working in the country, Mr Sen said. But he also expressed concern over “lack of professionalism in the medical community,” a problem he says needs to be tackled.

 

Mr Sen and his colleagues at the Kolkata Group also issued a declaration based on the debates they have had over the last couple of days. It not only called attention to the “abysmal state of health care” in the country, but also “the slow and very limited progress in women’s rights that includes a host of inequities, insecurities, and injustices.”The group in its declaration called upon the government to “recognise the recommendations of the Justice J S Verma Committee Report promoting women’s bodily integrity, dignity, and sexual autonomy.”

 

 

Thai universal healthcare scheme saves 80,000 families from bankruptcy


The Bangkok Post:

Launched in 2001, the UCS covered the remaining 47 million people, mainly those who were not enrolled in two other health schemes – the civil service medical benefits for government officials and family members, and the social security scheme for employees in private sector.

An assessment by a group of independent health system researchers and economists from international organisations including the World Health Organisation, found that this universal health coverage has prevented over 80,000 families from bankruptcy due to timely health treatment during its 10 years of implementation.

Conducted in 2011, the assessment showed that catastrophic health expenditure dropped from 6.8% in 1996 to 2.8% in 2008.

Impoverishment as measured by an additional number of non-poor households falling below the national poverty line due to medical treatment costs, was reduced significantly from 2.71% in 2000 prior to the UCS, to 0.49% in 2009.

Progress in the universal health scheme was also indicated by increasing outpatient visits per member per year from 2.41 in 2003 to 3.64 in 2011.

The number of hospital admissions almost doubled between 2003 and 2011. Data from 2010 showed a very low prevalence of unmet needs for health services in Thailand.

The report suggested that considering the positive results, the scheme should be maintained, even extended to minimise out-of-pocket payment and prevent impoverishment caused by healthcare expenditure among a majority of the population.

According to the book Good Health at Low Cost 25 Years On, launched during the week-long Prince Mahidol Awards Conference, Thailand outperformed many other countries in improving health outcomes at a low health funding per capita of 2,755 baht.

Read more here

Obama: Cover Birth Control; 8 Egyptian Women Win


The Obama administration said Jan. 20 that health insurance plans must cover contraceptives for women without charge, and it rejected a broad exemption sought by the Roman Catholic Church for insurance provided to employees of Catholic hospitals, colleges and charities, reported the New York Times. But the administration said it would give some employers affiliated with churches an extra year to comply, meaning that coverage would not begin for their employees until well after the 2012 elections.

Church leaders had personally appealed to Obama to grant the exemption, and he made the final decision on the issue after hearing all points of view, administration officials said

Archives

Kractivism-Gonaimate Videos

Protest to Arrest

Faking Democracy- Free Irom Sharmila Now

Faking Democracy- Repression Anti- Nuke activists

JAPA- MUSICAL ACTIVISM

Kamayaninumerouno – Youtube Channel

UID-UNIQUE ?

Enter your email address to follow this blog and receive notifications of new posts by email.

Join 6,231 other followers

Top Rated

Blog Stats

  • 1,783,673 hits

Archives

May 2020
M T W T F S S
 123
45678910
11121314151617
18192021222324
25262728293031
%d bloggers like this: