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India’s Health Security Gap Among Biggest In Asia: Report

The country has one of the largest health protection gaps in Asia, which is likely to rise by 12.3 percent annually to USD 214 billion by 2020, a report said.

“India has one of the biggest health protection gaps amongst the countries in Asia. The gap is projected to increase by 12.3 percent annually to USD 214 billion by 2020,” as per a report by Swiss Re, a leading wholesale source of reinsurance and insurance products.

The Health protection gap is referred as the difference between the level of healthcare costs that would be required to meet customer requirements, versus the amount that will be accessible to cover those costs if society’s total healthcare expenditure remained a constant percentage of GDP.

The country is likely to face a loss in healthcare financing of close to USD 43 billion in 2020, that will need additional fiscal spending or higher out-of-pocket funding by individuals, it said. Only 288 million (22.2 percent) of India’s population are covered by health policy, of which 214 million are insured under government schemes, 48 million are covered by group insurance, while 25 million use individual or family floater plans, it added.

The government and society will require spending more in the future to keep up with the rising demand for healthcare services because of higher income growth and a larger population.

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