India ranks 145th among 195 countries in terms of healthcare access: Lancet Study

As per Lancet’s Global Burden of Disease study, India ranked 145th among 195 countries in terms of quality and accessibility of healthcare on the Healthcare Access and Quality Index (HAQ Index).

However, despite such low rankings, India saw improvements in healthcare access and quality since 1990.

India’s healthcare access and quality

  • In 2016, India’s healthcare access and quality scored at 41.2, up from 24.7 in 1990.
  • Though India saw improvements in the Healthcare Access and Quality Index from 2000 to 2016, the gap between the country's highest and lowest scores widened from 23·4-point difference in 1990 to 30·8-point difference in 2016.
  • Goa and Kerala had the highest scores in 2016, each exceeding 60 points, whereas Assam and Uttar Pradesh had the lowest, each ranking below 40 points.
  • India performed poorly in tackling cases of tuberculosis, rheumatic heart diseases, Ischaemic heart diseases, stroke, testicular cancer, colon cancer and chronic kidney disease, among others.
  • India lags behind its neighbours such as China (48th rank), Sri Lanka (71st rank), Bangladesh (133rd rank) and Bhutan (134th rank).
  • However, India’s health index was better than that of Nepal (149th rank), Pakistan (154th rank) and Afghanistan (191st rank).

Healthcare access and quality across the globe

• The five countries with the highest levels of healthcare access and quality in 2016 were Iceland (97.1 points), Norway (96.6), the Netherlands (96.1), Luxembourg (96.0), and Finland and Australia (each with 95.9).

• The countries with the lowest scores were - Central African Republic (18.6), Somalia (19.0), Guinea-Bissau (23.4), Chad (25.4), and Afghanistan (25.9).

• China and India had the widest disparities in healthcare access and quality with 43.5 and 30.8 point differences, respectively.

• Japan had the narrowest differences in healthcare access and quality with 4.8 points.

• In 2016, the global average healthcare access and quality score was 54.4 points, an increase from 42.4 points in 2000.

• Disparities between countries remained similar in 2016 and 2000, with a 78.5 point gap between the best and worst performing countries in 2016 (97.1 points in Iceland and 18.6 in the Central African Republic), compared with 79.3 points in 2000 (92.8 in Iceland and 13.5 in Somalia).

• For the first time, the study also analysed healthcare access and quality between regions within seven countries: Brazil, China, England, India, Japan, Mexico, and the United States.

• The study used an index to measure the quality and accessibility of healthcare, based on 32 causes of death which should be preventable with effective medical care.


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