Over the last decade, India has experienced a rapid rise in wealth among the middle class and an overall increase in disposable income through the economy (Jain, 2020). Paired with the better living standards, consumer spending on health care has increased tremendously. Notably, this change has triggered a rise in lifestyle-related diseases. For instance, India is among the countries that recorded the highest prevalence of type 2 diabetes (Deepa et al., 2017). It has put the country’s health care system under significant pressure to deliver specialized treatment.
Usually, out-of-pocket health expenditures in India are high because many families lack insurance coverage. The healthcare system in the country is fragile and lacks basic infrastructure. Patients have to wait for long periods in the public sector primary health care facilities, encouraging some to choose private providers. The vast majority of rural and poor patients continue to suffer from infectious and acute diseases. While the overall health insurance has increased, it is still limited in the rural where people spend from their own pockets.
The main risk is the increased prevalence of infectious and acute diseases among patients in rural areas and lifestyle-related diseases among the urban population. This trend has caused increased spending on healthcare and wellness. Everyone should be given proper healthcare and should have access to insurance and subsidized medicine.
Surveys and questionnaires could estimate the percentage of rural and urban patients affected by infectious and lifestyle-related diseases, respectively. This data could also be collected from hospitals around the people and determine spending for people without a medical insurance cover.
Mathematically, it is possible to use the equation; Risk (r) = Hazard Probability (H) x Element Vulnerability (V).
There is inequity in the country. World-class medical facilities are concentrated in urban places, whereas the rural areas lack even primary healthcare. Consequently, there are severe disparities in health outcomes between the urban and rural areas. There is also high-income inequality that makes some groups unable to afford proper health care services in the country. Finally, the expenses of most medical insurance packages make people prefer out-of-pocket spending to pay costly premiums.
Patient-centered care could be crucial in India’s healthcare ecosystem because it could result in positive outcomes, such as greater satisfaction and increased quality of care. The patient is the key to this approach and promotes professional collaboration across the care delivery system. Integrated healthcare could also be vital because it entails adequate communication among health professionals. This approach could help reduce overall health care costs, enhance access to services in rural and urban areas, and improve the quality of care. Whatever the model, the key should be to provide appropriate and effective care to all people irrespective of whether they can afford it or not, where and when it is required. All these could allow sharing of information on quality, costs, and outcomes in care delivery.
Deepa, M., Anjana, R. M., & Mohan, V. (2017). Role of lifestyle factors in the epidemic of diabetes. European Journal of Clinical Nutrition, 71(7), 825-831. https://doi.org/10.1038/ejcn.2017.19
Jain, S. (2020). Analyzing the public health crisis in India fueled by the growth of the fast-food industry. International Journal of Social Science and Economic Research, 05(03), 791-798. https://doi.org/10.46609/ijsser.2020.v05i03.014