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Overview of Indian Healthcare Sector

  • 30 Mar 2023
  • 7 min read

For Prelims: Gender Index, Aquaculture, National Health Mission, World Health Organization, non-communicable Diseases.

For Mains: National health Mission, Health sector, eradication of leprosy.

Why in News?

Recently, in the Parliament House, various aspects of India's health and agriculture sectors, as well as their most recent updates, were discussed.

What are the Updates in Indian Health Sector?

  • Leprosy:
    • India has eliminated Leprosy as a public health problem, according to the World Health Organization criterion, there must be less than one case per 10,000 population at the national level, the criterion set in 2005 stated.
    • With several interventions introduced under the National Leprosy Eradication Programme in the last few years, the number of new leprosy cases detected have come down to 75,394 in 2021-22 from 125,785 in 2014-15.
  • Menstrual Hygiene Scheme:
  • Lifestyle Diseases:
    • The proportion of Non-Communicable Diseases (NCDs) have increased in India from 30.5 % in 1990 to 55.4 % in 2016.
      • The figures were quoted from 2017 Indian Council of Medical Research study report, India: Health of the Nation’s States — The India State-Level Disease Burden Initiative (2017).
  • Gender Gap in India:
    • India’s rank has improved on the Global Gender Gap Index in 2022 compared with 2021.
      • The Global Gender Gap Report 2022 was released by the World Economic Forum.
      • The Global Gender Gap Report 2022 ranks India at 135 out of 146 countries on the Global Gender Gap Index with a score of 0.629 out of 1.
  • High Blood Lead Levels:
    • Research by government think tank NITI Aayog and the Council of Scientific and Industrial Research, found that 275 million children under 19 years of age in India have blood lead levels that are abnormally high that is, greater than five micrograms per deciliter.
  • Cancer due to Arsenic Contamination in Assam and Bihar:
    • Assam had an estimated 39,787 cancer cases and Bihar had 109,274 in 2022, according to the ICMR National Cancer Registry Programme.
      • Prolonged use of arsenic contaminated water for drinking causes several diseases, predominantly skin pigmentation, thickening, hard patches on the palms and soles of the feet (hyperkeratosis)
      • These occur after a minimum exposure of approximately five years and may be a precursor to skin cancer. In addition, long-term exposure to arsenic may also cause cancers of the bladder and lungs.

What are the Updates in Indian Agriculture Sector?

  • The cultivable land area in India has declined 1,79,993 thousand hectares in 2019-20 from 1,80,624 thousand hectares in 2018-19, according to the latest Land Use Statistics-at a Glance 2010-11 to 2019-20.
    • The marginal decline in agricultural/cultivable land has been mainly due to the diversion of land for non-agricultural purposes such as urbanization, creation of infrastructure viz roads, airports, housing, etc.,
    • While there is shift in agricultural land for non-agricultural purposes, non-agricultural land is also being brought under agricultural uses through various schemes implemented by the government.

What are the Updates in Aquaculture?

  • India is the third largest fish-producing country, contributing 8% to global fish production, and ranks second in aquaculture production.
    • Fish production in 2021-22 was 16.24 million Tonnes comprising marine fish production of 4.12 million Tonnes and 12.12 million Tonnes from aquaculture.

UPSC Civil Services Examination, Previous Year Question (PYQ)

Q1. Which of the following gives ‘Global Gender Gap Index’ ranking to the countries of the world? (2017)

(a) World Economic Forum
(b) UN Human Rights Council
(c) UN Women
(d) World Health Organization

Ans: (a)

Q2. Which of the following are the objectives of ‘National Nutrition Mission’? (2017)

  1. To create awareness relating to malnutrition among pregnant women and lactating mothers.
  2. To reduce the incidence of anaemia among young children, adolescent girls and women.
  3. To promote the consumption of millets, coarse cereals and unpolished rice.
  4. To promote the consumption of poultry eggs.

Select the correct answer using the code given below:

(a) 1 and 2 only
(b) 1, 2 and 3 only
(c) 1, 2 and 4 only
(d) 3 and 4 only

Ans: (a)


  • National Nutrition Mission (POSHAN Abhiyaan) is a flagship programme of the Ministry of Women and Child Development, GoI, which ensures convergence with various programmes like Anganwadi services, National Health Mission, Pradhan Mantri Matru Vandana Yojana, Swachh-Bharat Mission, etc.
  • The goals of National Nutrition Mission (NNM) are to achieve improvement in nutritional status of children from 0-6 years, adolescent girls, pregnant women and lactating mothers in a time bound manner during the next three years beginning 2017- 18. Hence, 1 is correct.
  • NNM targets to reduce stunting, under-nutrition, anaemia (among young children, women and adolescent girls) and reduce low birth weight of babies. Hence, 2 is correct.
  • There is no such provision relating to consumption of millets, unpolished rice, coarse cereals and eggs under NNM. Hence, 3 and 4 are not correct.
  • Therefore, option (a) is the correct answer.


Q. “Besides being a moral imperative of a Welfare State, primary health structure is a necessary precondition for sustainable development.” Analyse. (2021)

Source : DTE

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