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Govt & households spend more for hospitalisation in private than public facilities, says study

The research by IIT-Jodhpur also found that the total per day spending in hospitalisation was around Rs 2,800 at public hospitals and Rs 6,800 in private facilities.

Representational Image | Source: https://cimsbilaspur.ac.in/

New Delhi: A new research conducted by IIT-Jodhpur has found that the government and households together spend more per hospitalisation in private hospitals than in public facilities.

The research was carried out across 64 healthcare facilities in Chhattisgarh. On average, the study found, the total per day spending in hospitalisation was around Rs 2,800 at public hospitals and Rs 6,800 in private facilities. The researchers had also calculated the difference in per episode hospitalisation cost at private and public hospitals with and without government subsidies.

The study reveals that inpatient care was a “bigger contributor to total health expenditure in India than any other form of healthcare utilisation”.

Alok Ranjan, assistant professor, School of Liberal Arts, IIT-Jodhpur, who led the research said the study found that if someone opted for private hospital care, the total cost per episode is around Rs 38,000 (without government subsidy) each day.

“While for the public sector, the cost of hospitalisation per day came out to be around Rs 14,000 (without subsidy),” Ranjan added.

“We further found that out of Rs 38,000 spent on private healthcare facilities, 86 per cent expenditure was out of pocket. When it came to the public sector, 31 per cent of the expenditure was out of pocket,” he further said.

‘Public healthcare facilities are more cost-effective’

The study also gives an insight into how much money India needs to build a robust public health infrastructure. Investment in public healthcare facilities, the research notes, is vital for achieving universal health coverage in India.

Public healthcare facilities are also more cost-effective compared to private hospitals for similar healthcare services, the research noted.

“Provisioning of inpatient care under public facilities is more cost effective compared to the private sector in India.There is an urgent need to invest in public health facilities compared to purchasing it from the private sector,” Ranjan said.

Dr Samir Garg (first author and executive director, State Health Resource Centre, Chhattisgarh; Narayan Tripathi, senior program coordinator, SHRC; and Kirtti Kumar Bebarta, program associate, SHRC, were also part of the team that conducted the study.


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