New Delhi: India is far behind Bangladesh, Pakistan and China in terms of its public health expenditure of 20.7% against 25% of Bangaldesh, 34.9% of Pakistan and 45% of China, according to a Joint Study conducted by Assocham and PriceWaterhouseCoopers (PwC) on Rs.Working towards Wellness: An Indian Perspective’.
The study will be released on 17 April and its focus is that it must increase its public expenditure on health to prevent it from becoming a centre for chronic diseases especially cardiovascular.
Estimates on deaths related to cardiovascular complications in the age group of 35-64 stand at 30% for India as compared to 12% in US, 22% in China, 25% in Russia, 34% in Brazil and 40% in South Africa.
The reason as to why public expenditure on health in countries like Pakistan and Bangladesh has risen much more than India is because economies of Pakistan and Bangladesh are moving up the development index and resultantly, their governments are making higher health allocations.
Indian government has realized that it has lagged behind on the health front and has tried to make up by enhancing budget proposals for 2007-08.
India today bears the burden of both communicable and non-communicable diseases. Along with the existence of infectious diseases like tuberculosis, malaria, pneumonia, HIV/AIDS, hitherto neglected diseases like diabetes are likely to exacerbate.
It is expected that the country would have a population of around 57.2 million diabetic patients by the year 2025 many of whom would be adults of working age. In India diabetic nephropathy is expected to develop in 6.6 million of the 30 million patients suffering from diabetes.
The Study has also recommended that the wellness programmes should be conducted in leading work places both government and public control to spread awareness for healthcare so that chronic disease does not overtake workforce as a result of which a great deal of production facilities will suffer adversely.