Despite progress over the past few decades, India's morbidity and mortality rates are still higher than the global average. Significant health disparities between rural and urban populations as well as regional variations indicate that many Indian's are not able to access the health care they need. There is an urgent need to address the gaps in healthcare access, as well as to ensure the provision of basic requirements for good health.
Not only do Indians' face disparities in access to health care, but also to public health knowledge and understanding. Empowering the public with appropriate knowledge in terms of disease awareness, prevention strategies and availability of health resources can greatly help improve their health and quality of life.
The first step in improving health is to prevent illness where possible. Promoting prevention initiatives and supporting disease management efforts will help to reduce healthcare costs and improve population health.
Improving access to affordable, effective health care and treatment is equally important in order to provide Indians with the best possible health outcomes.
There is a huge shortfall of healthcare facilities in India -- particularly in rural areas. Improvements are needed to upgrade the health infrastructure, ensuring access to key determinants of health such as maternal and child health care, immunization against major infectious diseases, prevention and control of locally endemic diseases, appropriate treatment of common diseases and injuries, promotion of mental health and provision of essential drugs.