Medical Education and Health Care: Budget 2022

The annual budget in parliamentary democracies is never an easy exercise, even at the best of times. Even with every effort to create what is euphemistically called a “balanced budget”, the opposition has its job to do. The backing is in two phases. The immediate, with a pre-confirmed vocabulary such as “anti-poor”, “politically motivated”, “unequal for the working classes” etc.

The second response comes in the form of analyzes by various lobbies such as industry, agriculture, education and health. These views are more analytical, suggestive and may have a coloring of a particular philosophy commonly referred to as leftist, socialist or capitalist.

One may like to review plans and allocations in medical education and health care, in the context of persistent Covid – post one billion vaccinations which continues to meet standards of two vaccines/individual.

The healthcare system is evolving in India through various central programs such as Ayuh Bharat, Swasthya Surakshna, Jan Aarogya Yojna, each covering affordable medicines, financial incentives to bear the costs and planning to upgrade existing facilities by putting the government focus on primary and secondary care. donors.

Although the total expenditure increased by 16% for health care, the statistical analysis of the current allocation of 86,000 Cr, compared to 73,000 Cr the previous year, showed, based on a new look on the numbers 21-20, that the real increase in allocated funds is 0.1 percent.

On the other hand, the central programs indicated above, 10,000 Cr to Swasthya Suraksha, 7,500 Cr to health and medical education, an increase of 56%, mainly for the upgrading of infrastructure and better quality of qualified education.

Health care is a set of services, focusing on clinical interactions, diagnosis, followed by investigations such as blood tests and other more expensive ones such as CT scans, MRIs and PET scans. These investigations can represent up to ten times the cost of the initial clinical examination. The cost of therapy, inpatient or outdoor, can be exorbitant, although I concede that my views are based on a tertiary specialty.

The 16% health allowance increase may in fact be sub-marginal, but funding through the central schemes somehow complements the comprehensive health package. Of course, there is a long way to go,

On the other side of the coin, WHO ranks India 145/180 for its healthcare system

Health costs are borne by the States up to 75%. The procedural delay, a lax system, affects 60% of the disbursements (OOPE, the FM has expressed its concerns on this subject). It is here that we salute a very competitive Indian pharma that releases drugs of acceptable quality at low prices. That they are often not accepted in Western countries is only a step. Invest in machines that automatically release quality slurry! Just follow their quality control system.

Medical education is provided by 532 medical faculties and 64 higher education institutions. The system enables 83,275 MBBS (medical graduates) to further specialize through NEET.

Private medical colleges have been given more space, which on the face of it gives a broader base of education. The important aspects that need to be monitored are the quality of the infrastructure and the qualification experience of the faculty. That a capitation fee is charged is part of the private system, but should be capped on the amount. The agreement must be transparent because taxes must be paid on income and transactions. Glad to see Apex Court statement that 50% of places in private medical schools should be offered for a fee in government colleges

A welcome move for super-specialization are the places offered in tertiary medical institutions. Neurosurgery, nephrology, organ transplantation… the list goes on.

We talk a lot about public-private cooperation. It promises to be beneficial both in terms of education, treatment and optimal use of infrastructure.

The federal plan is to spend 2.5 of GDP on health care by 2025, but the numbers could be revised depending on the results of the current allocation and central health-related plans.

“Health is the greatest gift, contentment the greatest wealth, fidelity the best relationship” Buddha



The opinions expressed above are those of the author.


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