Press Esc to close

Health policy must tackle new reality

DH News Service, Bengaluru, Nov 27 2017, 0:21 IST

The report "India: Health of the Nation's States," which was released last week, gives a better and more detailed perspective of the state of the nation's health than similar reports and surveys done in the past. It is very comprehensive and has much more data than exercises like the National Family Health Survey. It confirms some known facts but also provides new information which will be useful in formulating public health policies for particular regions and states. The report was prepared by the Indian Council of
Medical Research (ICMR) and some other organisations in collaboration with the Union health ministry. It has traced the changes which have taken place in the country's health profile over a period from 1990 to 2016 and mapped the state-wide divergences in disease burden. It is well known that social and economic development improves health outcomes. This has happened in India also and key health indicators like life expectancy have shown great improvement from 1990 to 2016. The report has shown this.

An important finding is that the disease profile has undergone a major change. During the 1990-2016 period, the threat posed by communicable diseases like tuberculosis and malaria and by maternal, neonatal and nutrition-related diseases declined and the burden of non-communicable diseases (NCDs) like heart ailments and diabetes has grown. In 1990, the burden of infectious and associated diseases was 61% and that of others, linked to lifestyles, was 30%. The relative positions reversed in 2016, with infectious diseases accounting for 33% and NCDs accounting for 55%. This trend is going to continue in the years to come and so public health strategies will have to be changed accordingly. Different strategies will be needed, which target sections of people in different socio-economic strata. Health infrastructure, medical education and the training and skills of medical personnel will have to be re-oriented to cater to the new situation.

The report also shows that the health profiles of different states vary widely. While NCDs took more lives in developed states like Tamil Nadu, Kerala and Punjab, infectious and associated diseases were the major threats to health in states like UP, MP and Orissa. The report also compared pairs of states like UP and MP, Punjab and Himachal Pradesh and Maharashtra and Gujarat and showed that national health performance can be vastly improved if the health problems and risks in particular states are targeted separately. The national health policy should be decentralised to address the specific needs of states, and even of regions within states. Collection of more data and better research will also help to fine-tune the policy.

Go to Top

More from this section
Most trending stories
Photo Gallery
Prime Minister Narendra Modi greets a gathering during 'Rally for Change' at Jawaharlal Nehru...

Prime Minister Narendra Modi greets a gathering during 'Rally for Change' at Jawaharlal Nehru...

Rahul Gandhi, newly elected president of India's main opposition Congress party, kisses the...

Rahul Gandhi, newly elected president of India's main opposition Congress party, kisses the...

A performer poses during celebrations after Rahul Gandhi, newly elected president of India's main...

A performer poses during celebrations after Rahul Gandhi, newly elected president of India's main...

Defence Minister Nirmala Sitharaman, Army Chief General Bipin Rawat, Chief of Naval Staff Admiral...

Defence Minister Nirmala Sitharaman, Army Chief General Bipin Rawat, Chief of Naval Staff Admiral...

Army and Air Force jawans pay homage to the martyrs of Indo-Pakistani War of 1971, on the...

Army and Air Force jawans pay homage to the martyrs of Indo-Pakistani War of 1971, on the...

Women take part in a bike rally to commemorate the Vijay Diwas celebrations in Karad, Maharashtra...

Women take part in a bike rally to commemorate the Vijay Diwas celebrations in Karad, Maharashtra...

Polling staff check EVM one day ahead of the Amritsar Municipal Corporation elections, in...

Polling staff check EVM one day ahead of the Amritsar Municipal Corporation elections, in...

Umarte Sau Crore Abhiyan Bihar members with eunuchs at a candle light march during a protest...

Umarte Sau Crore Abhiyan Bihar members with eunuchs at a candle light march during a protest...

Indian Air Force's 'Akash Ganga' sky diving team members perform during an air show on the...

Indian Air Force's 'Akash Ganga' sky diving team members perform during an air show on the...

The new Stoos Bahn, which claims to be the steepest funicular railway in the world, stands on its...

The new Stoos Bahn, which claims to be the steepest funicular railway in the world, stands on its...

Like us on Facebook

Copyright 2017, The Printers (Mysore) Private Ltd., 75, M.G Road, Post Box 5331, Bengaluru - 560001
Tel: +91 (80) 25880000 Fax No. +91 (80) 25880523
Powered by Yodasoft Technologies Pvt. Ltd.