Modicare: India’s government plans huge free healthcare program


Modicare: India’s government plans huge free healthcare program – Feb. 1, 2018

var storytext = document.getElementById(‘storytext’);
var heightToSkip = 0;

function resetValues()
totalHeight = 0;
targetChildElement = null;

// Check if story is in the blacklist of articles to remove smartassets
// [2017.07.27] Results of a one-off request from r.barbieri
if(BLACKLIST[location.pathname] === true) {
if(storytext == null)
console.log(“Error finding storytext element for SA embed”);

for ( i = 0; i 0)
heightToSkip -= storytext.childNodes[i].clientHeight;
else if(heightToSkip minHeight && targetChildElement != null)
//console.log(“total height = ” + totalHeight);
//console.log(“childNode = ” + targetChildElement);

storytext.childNodes[targetChildElement].insertAdjacentHTML(‘afterend’, smartAssetDiv);
smartasset = document.getElementById(‘smartasset-article’); = ‘left’; // allows module to have text float to right =’20px’; =’25px’;


/* bail out since we’re done */


/* div with id=”smartassetcontainer”. Sanity check to only embed once */
else if (storytext.childNodes[i].nodeName.toLowerCase() === ‘div’ && storytext.childNodes[i].id !== “undefined” && storytext.childNodes[i].id === “smartassetcontainer”) {

/* div with id=”ie_column” */
else if (storytext.childNodes[i].nodeName.toLowerCase() === ‘div’ && storytext.childNodes[i].id !== “undefined” && storytext.childNodes[i].id === “ie_column”) {

/* embeds from twitter, facebook, youtube */
else if (storytext.childNodes[i].nodeName.toLowerCase() === ‘div’ && storytext.childNodes[i].classList.contains(’embed’)) {

/* cnn video player */
else if (storytext.childNodes[i].nodeName.toLowerCase() === ‘div’ && storytext.childNodes[i].classList.contains(‘cnnplayer’)) {

/* images */
else if (storytext.childNodes[i].nodeName.toLowerCase() === ‘img’)

/* images stored in figure tags */
else if (storytext.childNodes[i].nodeName.toLowerCase() === ‘figure’)

The government said Thursday it plans to cover hospital treatment costs of up to 500,000 rupees ($7,800) per year for 100 million “poor and vulnerable” families. That’s more than 15 times the amount poor families in India can currently claim from the government.

Finance Minister Arun Jaitley estimated that around 500 million people will benefit from the program.

If the program is fully taken up, it would cost close to $780 billion, a huge sum for India’s $2.4 trillion economy.

“India cannot realize its demographic dividend without its citizens being healthy,” Jaitley said, referring to the country’s large young population. “The government is steadily but surely progressing towards the goal of universal health coverage,” he added, during a speech presenting his annual budget.

Jaitley said “adequate funds will be provided for smooth implementation” of the plan, but did not elaborate. Finance ministry officials did not respond to requests for comment.

Related: Millions more companies are now paying tax in India

Access to healthcare is a major problem in India. Public hospitals are few in number and often underfunded and understaffed.

India has just over 1 million registered doctors and fewer than 15,000 state hospitals for its 1.3 billion people, according to government data released last year.

Total spending on healthcare in India averaged $267 per person in 2014 — the latest year for which data is available — compared to $9,403 in the United States, $3,377 in Britain and $731 in China, according to the World Bank.

Many Indians have no choice but to use private hospitals, where treatment is unaffordable for someone earning the average annual wage of less than $2,000.

That forces many to go deep into debt or sell their valuables and other assets to pay for treatment.

Related: Shop at H&M or Walmart? You could be helping India’s rural women

The government is already trying to bring healthcare closer to rural Indians by establishing 150,000 “health and wellness centers,” a separate program to which Jaitley allocated around $190 million in the budget.

“These are significant steps towards universal health coverage,” Dr. Poonam Khetrapal Singh, regional director for South-East Asia at the World Health Organization, told CNNMoney.

CNNMoney (New Delhi) First published February 1, 2018: 12:43 PM ET


Source link

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *