India has failed to achieve in healthcare goals, badly lagging behind Bangladesh, China and Sri Lanka in terms of accessibility and quality, as per the new Global Burden of Disease study published in the medical journal The Lancet.
At the bottom, India came at 154th position in the ranking of healthcare quality in 195 countries, whereas some countries like South Korea, Peru and China have seen greatest improvements in healthcare access and quality since 1990.
Bangladesh has scored 52. China, with a score of 74 on the index, has been ranked at 82 – far ahead of India, and Sri Lanka has scored 73 on the index.
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Switzerland topped the health index, followed by Sweden and Norway.
Although India’s score in the healthcare index increased by 14.1 points, from 30.7 in 1990 to 44.8 in 2015, the study found that the gap between the score and predicted the score in the country has widened in the last 25 years.
The report also shows that India performed worse than expected in tuberculosis, diabetes, rheumatic heart diseases and chronic kidney disease.
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“Despite improvements in healthcare quality and access over 25 years, inequality between the best and worst performing countries has grown,” said Christopher Murray, director of the Institute for Health Metrics and Evaluation at the University of Washington, and leader of a consortium of hundreds of contributing experts.
Furthermore, he added in a statement, the standard of primary care was lower in many nations than expected given levels of wealth and development.Countries with the highest scores in 2015 include Canada, Australia, Japan and much of Europe.
Among rich nations, the worst offender in this category was the United States, which finished a dismal 35th and tops the world in per capita healthcare expenditure by some measures.
Within Europe, Britain ranked well below expected levels at 30th.
Overall, the results are a warning sign that heightened healthcare access and quality is not an inevitable product of increased development.
The HAQ index, based on death rates for 32 diseases that can be avoided or effectively treated with proper medical care, also tracked progress in each nation compared to the baseline year 1990.