Health care has been a neglected area in India for many social, political, geographical, and administrative reasons. In most parts of the country, there is a lack of essential health conditions like safe water, good nutrition and safe disposal of fecal urine, etc. Therefore, infectious and malnutrition, etc. diseases are more prevalent in India. In these conditions, health services are focused on curing diseases rather than preventing diseases. A country’s health care program must include both prevention and treatment –
Prevention-related health services such as vaccination, prevention of pandemics, and public health measures are included.
- Enhancing health, such as nutrition programs and promoting healthy lifestyles.
- Health education and information.
- Correct primary treatment.
- Time to send to the hospital.
The development of health services in India has been very uneven.
Urban people have received more attention and the villages have been ignored. Besides, there are many aspects of the problem of health services in villages. In most countries, health services are provided by the government, but in India, a large part of it is provided by the private sector.
The public sector mainly consists of rescue services such as vaccination. Public health services are quite limited anyway.
People are forced to depend on expensive private health services. Also, the private sector is not controlled. The treatment is not effective and a lot of money is charged for it.
Often medicines are given without need.
When the idea of health services was first introduced, it was sensitive to the needs of the people. Bhore Kamati (1949) gave very detailed suggestions that were accepted by the Government of India. But they were never fully implemented. Some of these important suggestions were –
The government should provide complete and free health services (treatment and rescue) to all.
Health services will gradually develop in different stages.
- First, there will be a primary health unit or center for every 60000 people. And one 75-bed hospital for every 1000 people.
- A 50-bed hospital was to be built on every 30 primary health centers.
- A 2400-bed hospital and a medical college should be built in every district (10-30 lakh population) headquarters.
- Due to these facilities, every 1000 population could get 4-6 beds and 2-5 doctors. We could not do all this. Instead, we could only do that in the 80 thousand – 1 lakh population, barely 1 p.a. To get a health center established. This too could not be made of 30 beds but only 4 beds.
- Special programs should be made to control important diseases like tuberculosis, malaria or cholera, etc.
- Specific health programs were to be implemented for those groups of people who are health hazards such as pregnant women, women immediately after giving birth, children working in hazardous industries, and others.
- At least 15 percent of the government budget should be spent in public health programs.
Preventive healthcare should be a part of medical education.
In today’s situation, the report of the dawn committee seems very heavy.
Health services that exist today are rarely matched. The condition of primary health centers is very poor, there is only one primary health center behind 20,000 to 30,000 people. In any state, there is a primary health center behind 100,000 people.
Apart from this, rural hospitals are not in running condition. The district-level hospitals have an average of 3000 beds while the Bhore Commission recommended 2400 bedded hospitals. On the other hand, the government budget for health services has been very low.
Inadequate public health services have been replaced by private health services whose sole purpose is to make profits.
Rural health services
Lack of health services has had the worst effect on people living in rural areas. Old and traditional methods of medicine and health have been completely ignored while they could have been easily combined with primary health services.
Traditional methods of treatment and health must be carefully pursued, as has been done in China. Older treatments are usually obtained from local jadibootis. Therefore, they are not even expensive. The naturalistic beliefs of people are also given importance in these ways.
On the other hand, rural areas mostly have private doctors trained in homeopathy or Ayurveda. But these people give allopathic medicines without full knowledge. Also, private health services are expensive.
The income of the family decreases because a sick person cannot work. In such a situation, the burden is increased by expensive treatment. It is also cost to travel to the health center in far-flung areas. On the other hand, homeopathy or Ayurveda are cheaper than modern treatment (allopathy), but the health workers present in the villages use them very rarely.
Time is changing and so the facilities and problems as well. Many government schemes can help control such type of situation. Many NGOs are also working for the betterment of the public. Many workers appointed by the government to provide medical facilities to the rural areas. Good communication and awareness among the mass will play a vital role in this. Many people don’t want to take medical services because of a lack of education. These people must aware of medical and modern healthcare services.
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