PM calls for increasing health spending to five percent

PM calls for increasing health spending to five percent

Answering a question on high rates of infant mortality and other health issues at the India Today Conclave, the prime minister said: “We need to increase public spending on health from less that two percent presently to about five to six percent in next five or six years.

That should be the goal that we should aim at as a nation."
The prime minister said the National Rural Health Mission focuses on these problems and, even though work has been done, more was needed.

“I do agree that we need to do lot more, but it would be wrong to say that nothing has been done. The National Rural Health Mission primarily focuses on some of these issues. But I do agree with you that this is not something which can be done or achieved overnight,” he said.

Infant mortality in India at present stands at 53 per thousand live births, while the maternal mortality rate is 230 per lakh population. Both are considered crucial indexes for measuring public health and stand quite high.

In 2008, India recorded world's highest number of maternal deaths at 63,000, even after a 59 percent drop in the maternal mortality rate compared to 1990.