Covid-19 Impact: Huge Decline in People Accessing Health Services -Ravi Duggal

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published Published on Dec 27, 2020   modified Modified on Dec 29, 2020

While Covid-19 affected all areas of life, it was access to healthcare where it had the maximum effect. So inpatient admissions, outpatient care or operations saw declines of up to 40%. Declines were also seen in deliveries, antenatal care and immunisation of children. States with a large private health sector also suffered as charges were increased substantially so that profits remained unaffected. So the message is clear–give adequate budgetary allocations for the health sector of at least 2.5% of the GDP. Is anyone listening, asks Ravi Duggal.

The impact of Covid-19 in our lives is wide-ranging–loss of livelihoods and incomes, forced migration, increased unemployment, disruption of the education system, reduced access to routine healthcare services, interrupted work and home environments and restrictions on travel, meetings, leisure activities and visits to friends and relatives.

There has been a transformation in our life spaces, social interface, cultural happenstances, economic exchanges and political engagements. We are now mostly confined within the four walls of our homes. We buy food and other necessities through online grocers and retailers instead of street corner vendors and the local baniya. We don’t go to cinemas and theatre as we watch films, drama and other entertainment programmes via OTT platforms. We are unable to participate in street protests and demonstrations and do so via social media. And of course, we have stopped face to face interactions with colleagues, friends and relatives and meet them via Zoom and video calls. Life has come full circle.

Please click here to read more., 27 December, 2020,

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