(This article concentrates on the health problems and issues in our nation. The next part will focus on the possible solutions for our health care system.)
As I am typing this article, 4 people die and an additional 2 are born. This is the second most populated country in the world- India.
India is the diabetic capital of the world.
Approximately, 1.6 million people of our enormous population are affected by the incurable AIDS. We rank 2nd in child malnutrition in the world and that is worse than many African countries. 665 million people in India excrete out in the open grounds. 100 million people in India suffer from hypertension and 31% of urban Indians are obese.
And by 2030, India will be the most populated country on the planet.
This is health care in India in 2012. This is the stark reality. This is what we are facing. And this is what we need to change.
These are not just mere numbers and statistics- they reflect the naked truth and the pathetic situation our health system is in.
While one side of the nation gorges itself on burgers and pizzas, millions of people leave this planet unable to afford even a single meal. We boast of an array of multispecialty hospitals and world class surgeons yet people in our country die because they don’t have access to first aid.
India’s health care system is plagued by Manpower shortfall, low public expenditure, and weak infrastructure, lack of awareness, inadequate resources and dramatic lifestyle changes.
The reason why there are so many infected people in our nation is simply due to the fact that we do not have enough doctors; currently, there is a demand for 600,000 physicians and the numbers are projected to increase in the near future.
We produce countless number of medical graduates every year, yet they are not enough. This is because the population of our country is growing by the second in enormous proportions and hence, we do not have the educated manpower to tackle the issue.
Another problem is the exodus of doctors to the greener pastures abroad in search of a better lifestyle and working atmosphere. Indian doctors form the largest percentage of non-native doctors across the entire world. If such a large number of doctors are bent upon making the other countries a healthy place, what will happen to our India?
The Indian medical system is short of proper funds from the government as it spends only 0.9% of the GDP. And this has resulted in poor facilities in hospitals- a deficit of 30 lakh beds.
Lack of awareness in rural areas has been a major issue for the multiplication of diseases. People do not know about sexual preventive measures or the necessity of proper nutrition and sanitation.
There has been a sudden surge in the occurrence of lifestyle diseases such as obesity, hypertension etc in the metropolitan cities. This is due to the adaption of the western way of living. We have aped their way of using branded apparels, high-end cars and fast food but we conveniently ignore their rigorous and religious approach to physical fitness and maintenance of health.
It is high time we address these rapidly growing health issues that are detrimental to the progress our nation.
We must understand that Health issues are not economically biased- diseases don't care whether you are rich or poor.
The majority of our population lives in rural areas while the remaining live in urban areas and both have their fair share of problems.
We must design an efficient health model that interlinks the urban and rural areas, implements technology and manpower effectively and economically profitable.