9.5.2 Indian System of Medicine (ISM)

Traditional Medicine Systems:

  • Indian Medicine Systems: There are six traditional medicine systems in India: Ayurveda, Yoga, Naturopathy, Unani, Siddha, and Homoeopathy (collectively known as AYUSH).

Specialized Medical Care Institutes:

  • Leading Institutes: Some top institutes providing specialized medical care in India include:
    • All India Institute of Medical Sciences (AIIMS), New Delhi
    • Postgraduate Institute, Chandigarh
    • Jawaharlal Institute of Postgraduate Medical Education and Research, Puducherry
    • National Institute of Mental Health and Neuro Sciences, Bengaluru
    • All India Institute of Hygiene and Public Health, Kolkata

9.5.3 Emerging Challenges in the Health Infrastructure

Need for Strong Health Infrastructure:

  • High GBD (Global Burden of Diseases):
    • GBD indicates premature deaths and disability due to specific diseases.
    • India bears 20% of the global burden, with communicable diseases like diarrhoea, malaria, and tuberculosis causing significant harm.
    • Waterborne diseases claim around five lakh children annually, and AIDS poses a significant threat.
    • Malnutrition and lack of vaccines contribute to 2.2 million child deaths each year.
  • Poor State of Primary Health Centres:
    • Less than 20% of the population utilizes public health facilities.
    • Only 38% of Primary Health Centres have the required number of doctors, and 30% have adequate medicine stocks.
  • Regional Bias – Urban-Rural Divide:
    • Only one-fifth of hospitals are in rural areas, with 11% of beds available.
    • Rural areas have 0.36 hospitals per one lakh people, compared to 3.6 hospitals in urban areas.
    • States like Bihar, Madhya Pradesh, Rajasthan, and Uttar Pradesh lag in healthcare facilities.
  • Income Bias – Poor-Rich Divide:
    • The poorest 20% spend 12% of their income on healthcare, while the rich spend only 2%.
    • Many poor resort to selling land or pledging children for medical treatment, leading to perpetual indebtedness.
  • Gender Bias – Poor Health of Women:
    • Growing female foeticide and early childbirth among girls under 15.
    • Over 50% of married women (15-49 years) suffer from anaemia, contributing to 19% of maternal deaths.
  • Communicable Diseases:
    • Over half of the GBD in India is due to communicable diseases, including diarrhoea, malaria, tuberculosis, AIDS, HIV, and SARS.
    • Approximately five lakh children succumb to waterborne diseases annually.
  • Poor Provision:
    • Inadequate healthcare facilities, especially in rural areas, leading to migration for medical services.
    • Mismanagement, insufficient medicines, and a lack of medical personnel and advanced equipment.
  • Privatisation:
    • Gradual government movement towards health care privatisation.
    • The rise of private hospitals makes healthcare expensive and inaccessible to many, with less than 20% relying on public health facilities.

9.5.4 Measures to Cope up with the Challenges Facing the Health Sector

Promoting Better Healthcare:

Health is crucial for everyone, and it’s a basic right. To enhance health services, especially for citizens, we can focus on a few important steps:

  • International Recognition:
    • Making sure that Indian healthcare institutions meet global standards through international accreditation. This helps in creating awareness about health and hygiene.
  • Telemedicine Opportunities:
    • Exploring the potential of telemedicine in India, which involves providing medical services remotely. However, there is a shortage of healthcare professionals.
  • Managing Overseas Patient Payments:
    • Addressing issues related to receiving payments in foreign currency from patients coming to India for medical treatment.
  • Public-Private Collaboration:
    • Encouraging partnerships between private and public sectors in healthcare. Such collaborations can ensure reliable, high-quality, and affordable drugs and medical care.

Objective Type Questions

1.How many traditional medicine systems are collectively known as AYUSH in India?
A) Four
B) Five
C) Six
D) Seven
Answer: C) Six

  1. Which institute is located in Puducherry and is known for postgraduate medical education and research?
    A) All India Institute of Medical Sciences (AIIMS)
    B) Postgraduate Institute, Chandigarh
    C) Jawaharlal Institute of Postgraduate Medical Education and Research
    D) National Institute of Mental Health and Neuro Sciences
    Answer: C) Jawaharlal Institute of Postgraduate Medical Education and Research
  2. What does GBD stand for in the context of health infrastructure challenges?
    A) Global Burden of Development
    B) Global Burden of Diseases
    C) Government Budget Deficit
    D) General Body Discussion
    Answer: B) Global Burden of Diseases
  3. What percentage of the global burden does India bear according to the passage?
    A) 10%
    B) 15%
    C) 20%
    D) 25%
    Answer: C) 20%
  4. What is the main challenge highlighted regarding Primary Health Centres in India?
    A) Lack of skilled personnel
    B) Poor state of facilities
    C) Overcrowding
    D) High cost of treatment
    Answer: B) Poor state of facilities
  5. In which areas does the passage mention a regional bias in healthcare facilities?
    A) Urban and rural
    B) Eastern and western
    C) Northern and southern
    D) Coastal and inland
    Answer: A) Urban and rural
  6. What does the term GBD indicate in the context of health challenges?
    A) Global Business Development
    B) General Body Discussion
    C) Global Burden of Diseases
    D) Government Budget Deficit
    Answer: C) Global Burden of Diseases
  7. What issue is mentioned regarding the poorest 20% of the population in terms of healthcare spending?
    A) Excessive spending
    B) Insufficient healthcare facilities
    C) Perpetual indebtedness
    D) Lack of healthcare awareness
    Answer: C) Perpetual indebtedness
  8. Why is privatisation in the health sector considered a challenge?
    A) It increases accessibility
    B) It makes healthcare affordable
    C) It leads to expensive healthcare
    D) It improves public health facilities
    Answer: C) It leads to expensive healthcare
  9. What is one of the measures suggested to cope with challenges in the health sector?
    A) Increasing privatisation
    B) Reducing international recognition
    C) Promoting public-private collaboration
    D) Ignoring telemedicine opportunities
    Answer: C) Promoting public-private collaboration

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