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Indians 6th biggest private spenders on health among low-middle income nations

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According to an India Spend analysis of two recent studies by The Lancet, a British medical journal, Indians were the 6th biggest private spenders on health in the low-middle income group of 50 nations in year 2014.

Data about Private Spending on Health: 

With 6% private expenditure on health, India along with Bangladesh, stood at 6th position among the biggest out-of-pocket spenders. This marks 37.45% difference from global average of 28.15%.Indians 6th biggest private spenders on health among low-middle income nations

  • Average out-of-pocket health expenditure for South Asia region comprising Bangladesh, Bhutan, India, Nepal and Pakistan stood at 4%.
  • At 6%, the average for BRICS nations (Brazil, Russia, India, China and South Africa) too was lower than India.

Spending on Public Health:

In India spending on Public Health was 3% of total health spending in 2014. Indian Government ranked 147 among 184 countries on this parameter.

  • The Global average for the same was 55% for 2014.
  • Among the 50 lower-middle-income countries, India ranked 39th, as the average for these countries was 2%.
  • In South Asia region comprising Bangladesh, Bhutan, India, Nepal; Bhutan had highest spending on Public Health, which accounted for 70.7% of total health spending.
  • Average for BRICS nations (Brazil, Russia, India, China and South Africa) was 47% on this parameter.

Observations from Lance study across 184 nations from 1995-2014: 

  • There is no specific correlation between economic development and total health spending, as substantial variation among countries exists.
  • Government spending on health in low-income countries needs to be hiked, as private per capita health spending in these countries will not grow as per requirement.
  • As announced in new National Health Policy, released in March 2017, Indian Govt aims to increase health spending to 2.5% of GDP. It is to be noted that the World Health Organisation (WHO) has recommended spending 5% of GDP.