There are about 479 medical colleges in India, churning out a little more than 53,000 doctors every year. The doctor-to-patient ratio for rural India stands at 1:30,000, which is well below the WHO’s recommended 1:1,000. With a significant portion of the population living below poverty line and about 70 percent living in rural areas, a large number of communities remain vulnerable to health and safety risk. India needs about five lakh doctors every year to raise its living standards and meet its sustainable development goals for health.
When it comes to urban India, the number of physicians to people ratio meets the global average. In other words, according to a KPMG report, the majority of healthcare professionals happen to be concentrated in urban areas: 74 percent of doctors in India cater to a third of the urban population. The vast majority of the deserving populace are left to fend for themselves. People in the rural areas need to traverse through days of inhospitable terrain to reach the nearest primary healthcare centre, only to be kept waiting for doctors to arrive.
Although paucity of doctors continues to be an obstacle to meet India’s development goals, the country’s spending on healthcare, which is one of the lowest in the world, is a major cause for concern. Life expectancy at birth remains low in India. Maternal health, noncommunicable diseases, cardiac ailments and other conditions are taking a huge toll on the general populace in the rural areas. The onus lies on a vibrant public-private partnership to ensure that scalable and affordable healthcare solutions are in place to reach the majority of rural folk and, thereby, transform India.
Piramal Swasthya fills the last mile gap in providing healthcare services to the masses. Using mobile technology and innovative services, Piramal invests in low-cost solutions to overcome challenges in infrastructure and emerge as an accessible primary healthcare services provider. Our 585 doctors and 1714 paramedical workers, out of a workforce of 4077 staff, work towards bringing affordable healthcare to one million beneficiaries every month, reaching every household in every village. Our team of physicians are at the frontline, sharing our vision and breathing life into the healthcare systems of India. With the kind of movement that we have ignited, we are sure that India will reach its sustainable development goals much ahead in time. Our heart goes to those selfless crusaders of public health, our physicians and paramedics, who have tirelessly stood tall in the face of insurmountable challenges and succeeded in bringing about the change. On this #DoctorsDay, let’s wish them well and thank them for all that they have done