CONTENTS Vol 12. No 2, February 2018 Chairman of the Board Viveck Goenka Sr Vice President-BPD Neil Viegas Editor Viveka Roychowdhury* Chief of Product Harit Mohanty BUREAUS Mumbai Usha Sharma, Raelene Kambli, Lakshmipriya Nair, Sanjiv Das, Mansha Gagneja Swati Rana Delhi Prathiba Raju Design National Design Editor Bivash Barua Asst. Art Director Pravin Temble Chief Designer Prasad Tate Senior Designer Rekha Bisht Graphics Designer Gauri Deorukhkar THE ECONOMICS OF CANCER CARE It is time for healthcare stakeholders to synergise and strategise to navigate the complex maze of cancer economics to ensure delivery of affordable and equitable cancer care in India | P-20 Artists Rakesh Sharma MARKET POLICY WATCH RADIOLOGY LIFE Digital Team Viraj Mehta (Head of Internet) Dhaval Das (Web Developer) Photo Editor Sandeep Patil MARKETING Regional Heads Prabhas Jha - North Harit Mohanty - West Kailash Purohit – South Debnarayan Dutta - East 30 RAY OF HOPE FOR ASHA WORKERS IN ASSAM Marketing Team Ajanta Sengupta, Ambuj Kumar, Douglas Menezes, E.Mujahid, Nirav Mistry, Rajesh Bhatkal, Sunil Kumar PRODUCTION General Manager BR Tipnis Manager Bhadresh Valia Scheduling & Coordination Santosh Lokare CIRCULATION Circulation Team Mohan Varadkar 10 February 2018 EXPRESS HEALTHCARE 14 71 ST CONFERENCE OF IRIA AND 17 TH AOCR HELD IN MUMBAI 19 HEALTHCARE SABHA TO BE HELD IN PUNE FROM MARCH 8-10, 2018 TRADE AND TRENDS 51 IN INDIA, WE AIM TO FOCUS ON PROVIDING HIGH QUALITY CARE 36 THERE IS AN EXPONENTIAL GROWTH OF SCIENTIFIC KNOWLEDGE IN RADIOLOGY WHICH NEED TO BE EXPLORED 39 ‘IT WOULD BE TOO EARLY TO MAKE ANY COMMENT ON THE EFFICACY OF THE HIV BILL’ Express Healthcare® Regd. With RNI No.MAHENG/2007/22045. Postal Regd.No.MCS/162/2016-18. Printed and Published by Vaidehi Thakar on behalf of The Indian Express (P) Limited and Printed at The Indian Express Press, Plot No.EL-208, TTC Industrial Area, Mahape, Navi Mumbai-400710 and Published at Express Towers, Nariman Point, Mumbai 400021. Editor: Viveka Roychowdhury.* (Editorial & Administrative Offices: Express Towers, 1st floor, Nariman Point, Mumbai 400021) * Responsible for selection of news under the PRB Act. Copyright © 2017. The Indian Express (P) Ltd. All rights reserved throughout the world. Reproduction in any manner, electronic or otherwise, in whole or in part, without prior written permission is prohibited.
EDITOR’S NOTE Budget or ‘fudge’it, only time will tell Finance Minister Arun Jaitley's last full budget before the 2019 general elections seems to be a first step towards universal health coverage for Indian citizens. This is clearly a precursor to Prime Minister Modi's version of Obamacare. Kicking off the health section of the Union Budget 2018-19, the FM said, “Only Swasth (healthy) Bharat can be a Samriddha (prosperous) Bharat. India cannot realise its demographic dividend without its citizens being healthy.” There is criticism that with recent electoral set backs due to farmer distress in the rural areas and a restless jobless urban youth, most Budget announcements this year favoured Bharat rather than India. The sub text to most announcements is the creation of jobs as an additional spin off benefit. There is also an effort to distance itself from the Opposition's criticism of being overtly corporate friendly ('suitboot ki sarkar') at the cost of the common citizen. For instance, the FM prefaces his allocation for an additional ` 600 crore for nutritional support to TB patients at the rate of ` 500 per month during their treatment, with the statement that TB ‘affects mainly poor and malnourished people.’ There is no fault with this rationale. In fact, a focus on bettering health outcomes at the grassroots, including both rural and urban poor, is long overdue. Centres of excellence in healthcare, both in public and corporate, tend to be located in major metros. Most urban Indians tend to have more resources, hence better access to nutrition and preventive health check ups. Most of the salaried population can afford self purchased as well as corporate sponsored/subsidised insurance cover. Thus the FM's announcement to upgrade existing district hospitals in the country and create 24 new government medical colleges and hospitals is a good move to strengthen the health ecosystem in India's villages and district towns, reducing the need to travel to cities for healthcare, except for the very serious cases. It will also address the dearth of doctors and paramedical staff in India, which often hampers healthcare delivery. The FM has also increased the limit of deduction for senior citizen health insurance under Section 80D, from ` 30,000 to ` 50,000 which will enable senior citizens to access more healthcare facilities. But the centrepiece of the budget’s proposals Even if FM Jaitley has rectified the mistakes of Obamacare,will this government have the time to implement Modicare? for health is the a flagship National Health Protection Scheme, as part of the Ayushman Bharat scheme. Pegged as the ‘world’s largest government funded national health programme,’ it aims to provide insurance cover to over 10 crore poor and vulnerable families, (benefiting approximately 50 crore family members), providing coverage upto ` 5 lakh per family per year for secondary and tertiary care hospitalisation programme. While major hospitals, diagnostic players and insurance companies have hailed these announcements, as more business could come their way, they are cautiously awaiting details of its implementation. Many PPPs have gone south as private players allege that payments from government tend to get mired in red tape, are disputed, delayed and often have to be written off. On the primary healthcare side, the FM committed ` 1200 crore to the existing 1.5 lakh health and wellness centres and expanded their coverage to include non-communicable diseases and maternal and child health services, with free essential drugs and diagnostic services. He also intends to harness the mandatory CSR funds of corporates by inviting them to adopt these centres. As industry scrutinises the finer details, there is criticism that fund allocation to healthcare hasn't really increased that much, with the government merely repackaging old wine in a new bottle and topping it off a bit. For instance, there are indications that Ayushman Bharat will be a consolidation of existing schemes under the Jan Suraksha framework, with existing schemes like the Rashtriya Swasthya Bima Yojana (RSBY) as well as schemes launched by individual state governments under a common umbrella. Funds allocated by the centre for state run health schemes often do not get spent, hence this could be a good way to monitor and re-distribute funds to states and schemes which have a history of using health funding efficiently with maximum proven outcomes. With the traditional animosity between centre and state governments, especially those not of the same political colour as the centre, this could well turn out to be a prolonged turf war. Even if FM Jaitley has rectified the mistakes of Obamacare, will this government have the time to implement Modicare? VIVEKA ROYCHOWDHURY Editor firstname.lastname@example.org EXPRESS HEALTHCARE 11 February 2018