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A Frank Statement on the Health Economics Franchise

Authors
Journal
Indian Journal of Community Medicine
0970-0218
Publisher
Medknow Publications
Publication Date
Volume
33
Issue
4
Identifiers
DOI: 10.4103/0970-0218.43223
Keywords
  • Editorial
Disciplines
  • Economics
  • Medicine

Abstract

India has achieved notable progress in health after its commitment to the Alma Ata declaration and especially after the revolutionary steps listed in the National Health Policy 2002(1)—particularly in fund allocations. The latest time-bound National Rural Health Mission (NRHM)(2) has ensured a great surge in taking health care closer to the underprivileged populations. Despite this appreciable progress, commitment in further areas demands urgent attention in a competitive environment. The 35th Annual National Conference of Indian Association of Preventive and Social Medicine (IAPSM), JIPMER, Pondicherry (January 2008) focused on several key issues confronting health economics in India around the theme “Health Economics: Adequate Allocation and Resource Redistribution”. The aim was to focus attention towards creating active awareness even among public health and preventive medicine specialists and thereby to other disciplines as well. Discussions concentrated on several theoretical as well as practical methods of health financing, monitoring of health fund flow, and assessing the outcome not only in terms of cost-benefit or cost-effectiveness but also in terms of the actual fraction of health finance that effectively reaches the underprivileged public. Great success was achieved in this process of creating awareness starting with the purposeful, all embrasive, and practically oriented inaugural speech(3) given by the Union Minister of Health and Family Welfare dwelling on various issues of health financing, the social objectives of NRHM, and their achievements. Several experts in the field of health economics touched upon key issues on the theme, which was very well received by the packed audience. The objective of this statement is two-fold; one, to reassure the theoretical and practical aspects of the plenary sessions of the conference and two, to discuss in detail the yet untouched areas in public health and preventive medicine with a stress on professional and social awareness in health econom

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