India has made all-round progress after achieving independence. The economy, after the new millennium has been growing at a healthy rate of above seven per cent of GDP annually. Industry, trade, commerce, banking, transportation, communication, software technology and health care have made rapid strides.
Health care is a broad term and includes diagnosis and treatment of diseases and ailments, ensuring availability of essential medicines, prevention of diseases and epidemics by taking necessary steps, creating immunity and strength among people to fight diseases, conducting research for improvement of diagnostics and treatment methods and creating awareness among people so that they take preventive measures to save themselves from deadly diseases. In a nut shell, health care means taking care of the physical and mental well-being of human beings.
It has been alleged that in India, the health care facilities are concentrated and confined to cities, particularly major cities and the metropolitan cities. Each city has hospitals, diagnostic centres, pathological laboratories, poly-clinics and several private practitioners whereby the patients can go and get their maladies treated. There are several chemist shops in which various types of medicines are available.
The centres of Central Government Health Scheme (CGHS) are in the cities and towns only. The insurance products like mediclaim, accident insurance, etc. are primarily targeted towards the middle class living in the cities who can afford the high premium these products carry.It is a disturbing fact that the health care facilities are woefully inadequate in the villages. It won’t be an exaggeration to say that these facilities are non-existent in the villages. There is no hospital in a radius of ten kilometers in most of the rural belts. In many, villages there are no private qualified doctor. For minor ailments, the villagers do not normally go to a doctor, but for major problems like heart ailments,...