Indian healthcare must be evidence-based4 min read 11 May 2017, 12:05 AM IST
Healthcare policy has relied on pharmaceutical and equipment advances, but evidence-based policymaking has been absent when it comes to service delivery
The Union cabinet recently approved the National Health Policy, 2017. In a welcome move, the policy includes progressive steps towards universal and affordable access to healthcare services for the underprivileged. It does this by making provisions for comprehensive primary care via the conversion of 150,000 sub-centres (the first contact point between the primary healthcare system and the community) in Indian villages to “Health and Wellness Centres". There is provision for every family to be provided with a health card that will link it to the primary care facility and make it eligible to receive a defined package of services anywhere in the country. While this is a positive step, the government will require a robust mechanism to implement and monitor the mammoth mission.