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Budget 2024: Health Experts Urge Government To Increase Bed Availability, Provide Subsidised Vaccines | Personal Finance News

New Delhi: Health experts stressed the importance of increasing the number of hospital beds in the country during a pre-budget meeting with Finance Minister Nirmala Sitharaman in Delhi on Thursday. They emphasised that the current availability is below the standards set by World Health Organization (WHO).

Girdhar Gyani, Director General of the Association of Healthcare Providers said, “We have presented to the government the data that there are less than two beds per thousand population in our country, while WHO requires that there should be 3.5 beds per thousand population. Over and above, we have told them that there is a great disparity in terms of bed density,” (Also Read: Vedanta Announces Financial Support For Transgender Employees’ Higher Education)

The experts also pointed out that in regions like Bihar, the shortage of hospital beds forces patients to travel long distances for treatment “Karnataka has got 4.2 beds per 1,000 population, while Bihar has got only 0.3 beds per 1,000 population. So this makes Bihar population travel all the way for treatment,” Dr. Gyani explained. (Also Read: 6 Key Health Insurance Claim Rule Changes You Need To Know: Details Here)

Additionally, the experts proposed that certain adult vaccines, such as the influenza vaccine and the cervical cancer vaccine for women, should be provided at subsidized costs. “Certain adult vaccination is a very important point. People do not know there is adult vaccination. Like we have influenza.

There is a vaccine available for cervical cancer in women, and those people don’t know about it. So we want to provide some vaccines, either free or at the subsidized cost to the population,” Dr. Gyani added after the meeting with the finance minister.

The experts also highlighted that, under the Ayushman Bharat Scheme, patients often need to go to private hospitals because 85 per cent of tertiary care beds are in the private sector. They suggested implementing a co-payment scheme for Ayushman Bharat patients to access treatment in private hospitals.

 “We are suggesting let there be a co-payment scheme. That means certain higher-end hospital patients can go and over and above the government reimbursement they should be allowed to pay cash from their own side so this will provide flexibility to the patient,” Dr. Gyani said. (With ANI Inputs)