Just a FYI post to understand the basic differences between Indian and US healthcare system. This kind of comparative study can help us understand the good features and flaws in both the systems.

  1. In India the total expenditure as percentage of GDP is as low as 4-5 %. Whereas in US it is well beyond world standards, as high as 16.2 % of GDP. With highest per capita expenditure in the world US is ranked on 37th position, which indicates that increasing expenditure on healthcare is not the only solution to improve the health status of the citizens. On the other hand, India ranks quite low and stands at 112 which is well below countries like Sri Lanka(76) and Bangladesh (88). 
  2. The Indian Healthcare system can be considered as a Mixed Healthcare System where there is a government health infrastructure which provides healthcare at primary, secondary and tertiary levels. In addition to this there is a strong presence of private healthcare infrastructure which is growing stronger by the day with decline of trust of people in public hospitals. While in US the system is majorly privately funded where the employers are supposed to fund for the employees working with them. There is public funding is available only for unemployed people who cannot afford to purchase health insurance.
  3. Out of the pocket payments account for 70% of healthcare costs in India which warrants a work up on strengthening of financing mechanisms like insurance. On the other hand in US the out of pocket expenditure stands at around 10-12%.
  4. With the perspective of  outcomes, in India the Life expectancy at birth m/f (in years) is 63/66 while that for US is 76/81. Another important factor is Probability of dying under five (per 1000 live births) which indicates the load of infective diseases which affect children and the ability of the healthcare system to deal with them . In India the Probability of dying under five is as high as 66 per 1000 live births while that of US is 8 per 1000 live births.
  5. India has a universal health care system run by the local (state or territorial) governments. Government hospitals provide treatment at taxpayer expense. Most essential drugs are offered free of charge in these hospitals. However, the fact that the government sector is understaffed, underfinanced and that these hospitals maintain very poor standards of hygiene forces many people to visit private medical practitioners.. The United States does not have a universal health care system; it is a proposed reform. The Obama administration health care reform, the Patient Protection and Affordable Care Act (PPACA) as amended by the Health Care and Education Reconciliation Act of 2010, seeks to have near-univesal healthcare insurance coverage to legal residents.


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  4. We need a Healthcare Revolution in India along with the political revolution that just geared up !! Healthcare System in small towns, rural India even in large towns is a mess. A patient is running in sea, if he happens to affected with any serious disease. Doctor after doctor..hospital after hospital..no end to it. Because there is no system at all. No record at all. Various doctors opines differently for same disease. We should have strong Healthcare Documentation System in India!!

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