ICS Analysis

The Illusion of Universal Health Care: Medical Insurance as the Panacea

This analysis places the recent developments in health policy in India and China in the context of the departure from the principles and design that informed the Primary Health Care (PHC) approach in 1978. Both the countries were engaged with the process and were signatories to this declaration. With the PHC declaration at the backdrop, this analysis will look at the discourse on universal health care in India and China that has evolved over the last decade in the context of reforms and how medical insurance is seen as the panacea to achieve universal health coverage, instead. In the past decade universal health coverage has gradually come to replace universal health care, alluding to the latter but restricting itself to access to medical care through insurance mechanisms. This is far removed from the vision of the PHC approach of 1978 and the idea of health for all.

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Assistant Director & Associate Fellow

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