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Globalization and Health Care Financing in India: Some Emerging Issues

Author: GULJIT K. ARORA AND ANIL GUMBER
Published in PFM, Vol. 5 No. 4

The paper highlights the changing scenario of the healthcare financing in India in the wake of
globalisation process initiated during early 1990s and the structural changes taking place in the
health sector. It attempts a status report of the health sector in India and raises issues related to
accessibility, efficiency, and quality of the health delivery in the face of glaring inter-state
variations and discouraging healthcare financing situation. The rising health needs particularly
in the backward and low income states, sluggish health outcomes, dwindling budgetary
allocations and heavy household out-of-pocket expenditure on health pose serious challenges to
healthcare financing in India. The paper also discusses the issues likely to be further compounded
as global institutions (such as the WTO) are supposed to ensure compliance to Intellectual
Property Rights; but, unfortunately, can not provide for the healthcare needs of the poor in India
in the face of rising health risks.

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