Support Oxfam India to Urge the Government to Act

  • Increase in Budget: The government must fulfill its commitment to allocate 2.5% of GDP on healthcare by 2025 by substantially increasing the health budget to strengthen the public health system. 70% of healthcare expenses in India are met by out-of-pocket expenditure by the individual, resulting in millions being pushed into poverty every year.
  • Price regulation: The government must regulate the private health sector so they do not overcharge patients, regulate the price of new drugs and drugs for treatment of rare diseases. Expense on medicines accounts for the highest percentage, 52%, of out-of-pocket expenditure.  
  • Health for All: Set up a national scheme guaranteeing free medicines and diagnostics to ensure universal access to healthcare at all public health facilities across India. This will help achieve 'Health for All', as was emphasised in the 2014 Union Budget.

Oxfam India works to empower marginalised communities, mobilize people, advocate inclusive policies and provide life-saving relief during emergencies and disasters. Your monthly support will help us to advocate with the government to strengthen the public health system so everyone can have access to good quality healthcare irrespective of their social and economic status.

Donating monthly ensures continuous and consistent support for people from marginalised communities. Without which, it is difficult for Oxfam India to plan a sustainable program for long-term change.

COVID-19 has shed light on a broken health system

Help us demand quality healthcare for all

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Things you should know


Rising cost of private healthcare

As a result of inadequate public healthcare, Indians turn to private healthcare in the hope of better quality services. But the exorbitant costs of treatment burns a hole in their pockets. 63 million people are pushed into poverty every year due to out of pocket expenditure. A country in which 92% of women and 83% men earn less than Rs. 10,000 a month, good health comes at an unfair price.

Lack of access to healthcare for the poor

India ranks 145th among 195 countries in terms of quality and accessibility of healthcare, behind its neighbours like China, Bangladesh, Sri Lanka and Bhutan. And in the current context of the COVID-19 pandemic, it is the poorest who are least likely to be able to access healthcare and treatment.

Low expenditure on public hospitals

The government has been consistently neglecting the public health system. India spends just 1.28% of its GDP on health. There is one government doctor for every 1445 Indians, compared to the WHO's norm of one doctor per 1000 people.

Overstretched public hospitals

Due to limited funding of government hospitals, they are overstretched due to shortage of doctors, nurses, beds, ventilators, limited Personal Protective Equipment, testing facilities and other medical equipment. This has adverse impacts on the services provided by the government hospitals.

Pratima Devi, a casualty of India's growing Inequality and failed Public Health System

Pratima Devi is a resident of Kaushal Nagar, Patna. She lives with her husband, Ranjeet Kumar, a driver, and their daughter Shanti, a 14-year-old student studying in 8th standard.

Pratima lost her twin babies in childbirth due to delays and a lack of medicines in her local government clinic. The Indian government barely taxes its wealthiest citizens and its spending on public healthcare ranks among the worst in the world. Pratima’s children did not need to die.

Her heart-breaking story is the story of millions of women around the world risking their lives having a baby, without adequate medical care.

In India, the highest-quality medical care is only available to those who have the money to pay for it. The country is a top destination for medical tourism. At the same time, levels of public spending on health are some of the lowest in the world.

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