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Health PolicyJan, 13 2015

National Health Policy 2015: A balanced and pragmatic approach towards Health Coverage

ASSOCHAM feels that the policy, which sets an ambitious goal, will ensure healthcare as a fundamental right and allow voluntary adoption by States.

By Agencies

ASSOCHAM welcomes the draft National Health Policy 2015 intended to replace the earlier policy of 2002. The move is critical in the context of lagging healthcare indicators, changing disease patterns and the need for greater efficiency and accountability in healthcare for creating a viable security net for the population.

ASSOCHAM feels that the policy, which sets an ambitious goal, will ensure healthcare as a fundamental right and allow voluntary adoption by States, depending on their per-capita health expenditures. Further, the Chamber is confident of the following:

1. Increased healthcare expenditure to 2.5 per cent of GDP in the next 5 years (from the current ~1 per cent) is essential for increasing access and quality of public health facilities through the National Health Mission.

2. Reduced out-of-pocket healthcare expenditure will eliminate financial hardships and impoverishment caused due to health spends.

3. Greater focus on preventive and rehabilitative care in context of rising burden of non-communicable diseases.

4. Continuity in the financing strategy of primary care by the public sector, complimented with strategic purchase of secondary and tertiary care from both public and private sector. The social and collaborative PPP nature of the healthcare provision, building on the successful Rasthriya Swasthiya Bima Yojana (RSBY) has the potential to transform the healthcare sector.

ASSOCHAM believes it is vital for the Government to create an enabling ecosystem of a robust, institutional mechanism for technical coordination between the Centre and states for achieving the desired results. This has to be coupled with accreditation of healthcare facilities and provision of Standard Treatment Guidelines for ensuring quality and implementing National Electronic Health Records to ensure international data interoperability, as key enablers for ensuring quality healthcare for all.

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