The State Of Preventive Care In India
When we talk about preventive care in India, we see a picture that is simultaneously bright and dull. While there are some significant success stories such as the eradication of Polio and Smallpox, Guinea worm, and Polio the contribution of preventable diseases to all deaths in India increased from 37.9% in 1990 to 61.8% in 2016, and then there was the pandemic.
The Covid-19 pandemic has caused massive disruptions globally. People, communities, and countries have experienced economic setbacks. However, this pandemic has also made us realize the importance of quality healthcare in building a healthy and prosperous nation.
In the past, we focused primarily on curative medicine while neglecting preventive care, leading to many preventable diseases. The current pandemic has exposed the limitations of curative medicine and highlighted the gaps in our health systems. We must take responsibility for our health and address the root cause of health issues.
Preventive care can help prevent lifestyle-oriented diseases, but it only accounted for a small portion of India's healthcare expenditure in 2019, partly due to a lack of awareness. Nevertheless, the pandemic has increased awareness of the risks of neglecting chronic diseases such as COPD, diabetes, and hypertension.
Therefore, we need to make a concerted effort to prioritize preventive healthcare measures. Healthcare professionals, pharma companies, and individuals must work together to make this happen.
This means that even as the healthcare setup in India has grown considerably over the last few decades somehow there hasn’t been a proportionate decrease in the diseases that could have been avoided. In other words, we are getting better at finding cures but not at finding solutions.
Types Of Preventive Care in India
According to a recent report on the state of preventive health in India, the preventive healthcare sector is projected to reach US$ 197 billion by 2025, with a compound annual growth rate (CAGR) of 22%.
This sector encompasses a range of areas, including fitness, wellness, foods and supplements, early diagnostics, and health tracking. The rapid growth of this sector is attributed to the increasing use of technology to provide affordable, accessible, and personalized healthcare to the country's one billion people.
Mr. Sudhir Sethi, Founder and Chairman of Chiratae Ventures, believes that India is looking to effectively deliver quality healthcare to its population through technology. This has led to more than 40 preventive healthcare technology startups raising around US$ 1 billion in funding over the past three years.
With the COVID-19 pandemic highlighting the importance of preventive care, at least 40% of survey participants showed a high inclination towards preventive health.
Healthcare organizations and diverse corporates are also entering the preventive health market by collaborating with startups or developing their own digital platforms and programs, according to consulting firm Redseer. This shift from curative to preventive treatment is expected to result in better health outcomes and lower healthcare expenses for Indian consumers.
The increasing focus on preventive healthcare in India has led to the development of a wide range of technologies and solutions aimed at improving health outcomes. These include wearable devices that track vital signs, apps that offer personalized diet and exercise plans, and diagnostic tools that enable early detection of diseases.
In addition, the rise of telemedicine has made it easier for people in remote or underserved areas to access healthcare services. Telemedicine allows patients to connect with doctors and healthcare professionals through video conferencing, phone calls, and other virtual means. This has proved to be especially beneficial during the pandemic when many people were unable or unwilling to visit hospitals or clinics in person.
Overall, the preventive healthcare sector in India is poised for significant growth in the coming years. With increasing investments in technology and innovation, it is expected to offer improved health outcomes and better access to healthcare services for the country's population.
Tips For Accessing Preventive Care In India
Accessing preventive healthcare is crucial for maintaining good health and preventing illnesses. In India, preventive healthcare can be challenging due to the lack of awareness, inadequate resources, and high costs. However, there are ways to overcome these barriers and ensure access to preventive healthcare.
One of the best ways to access preventive healthcare in India is through regular health check-ups. Health check-ups can help detect health problems early on, which makes treatment easier and more effective.
Many hospitals and clinics offer health check-up packages that are affordable and cover a range of tests and screenings. One can also check with their health insurance provider to see if they offer discounted or free check-ups.
Another way to access preventive healthcare is through workplace wellness programs. Many companies in India are partnering with healthcare providers such as Loop to provide medical consultations, lab tests, and wellness sessions to their employees. These programs are not only beneficial to the employees but also to the employers as they can lead to a more productive and healthy workforce.
Apart from workplace wellness programs, one can also access preventive healthcare through government schemes such as Ayushman Bharat. Ayushman Bharat is a health insurance scheme that aims to provide financial protection and access to quality healthcare to vulnerable sections of society.
One can also check with their local government or community health centers for free or low-cost preventive healthcare services.
Maintaining a healthy lifestyle is also essential for preventive healthcare. This includes eating a balanced diet, exercising regularly, getting enough sleep, and avoiding unhealthy habits such as smoking and excessive drinking. These lifestyle choices can help prevent many chronic diseases such as diabetes, heart disease, and cancer.
Being Proactive About Being Preventive
Accessing preventive healthcare in India requires a proactive approach, and there are several ways to do so. Regular health check-ups, workplace wellness programs, government schemes, and maintaining a healthy lifestyle are all effective strategies. Companies such as Loop can play a significant role in providing access to healthcare by partnering with workplaces and offering their services.
Frequently Asked Questions
Q: What is preventive healthcare?
A: Preventive healthcare refers to measures taken to prevent illnesses before they occur. This includes regular health check-ups, screenings, vaccinations, and lifestyle modifications such as healthy eating, exercise, and avoiding unhealthy habits.
Q: What are some common preventive healthcare measures in India?
A: Common preventive healthcare measures in India include regular health check-ups, vaccinations, screenings for diseases such as cancer and diabetes, and lifestyle modifications such as healthy eating and exercise.
Q: How can I access preventive healthcare in India?
A: You can access preventive healthcare in India through regular health check-ups, workplace wellness programs, government schemes such as Ayushman Bharat, and maintaining a healthy lifestyle.
Q: Can workplace wellness programs help improve employee health?
A: Yes, workplace wellness programs can help improve employee health by providing access to medical consultations, lab tests, and wellness sessions. These programs can also lead to a more productive and healthy workforce, benefiting both employees and employers.