Research - Establishing Health As a Human Right

Research on Status of Health

The research intends to generate comprehensive state-wise information on the health status, across India. This is in an attempt to draw a co-relation between the performance of health care facilities and public health, across the rural-urban divide. The two reports, titled, Review of Healthcare in India and Health and Healthcare in Maharashtra – A Status Report are the outcomes of such research.

  • Review of Healthcare in India

The report sought to analyse and reinterpret the health situation and health statistics from the public perspective. This, again, is aimed at boosting the movement for a comprehensive health policy for India.

  • Health and Healthcare in Maharashtra- A Status Report

The report consists of detailed analytical information on the critical aspects of health care issues in Maharashtra. Though Maharashtra is one of the affluent states in India with the highest per capita income, it continues to witness sharp socioeconomic imbalances that ultimately translate into poor health outcomes. This report also focuses on a declining sex ratio and public health expenditure, disparities in rural-urban public health expenditure and rural-urban infant mortality. The report also carries a review of the state run health care facilities, together with some indicators of health status such as infant mortality, child mortality, life expectancy, morbidity and hospitalisation, nutritional status, water supply and sanitation in Maharashtra. The report has been published and disseminated widely.

  • Health and Healthcare in Assam - A Status Report

This report is a comprehensive and analytical compilation of healthcare development of Assam bringing together all available information and data on health and healthcare. This was done in collaboration with the Omeo Kumar Das Institute, Guwahati.

Research and Documentation on the Health and Healthcare of Vulnerable Groups

Vulnerable Groups are disadvantaged as compared to others mainly on account of their reduced access to medical services and the underlying determinants of health such as safe and potable drinking water, nutrition, housing and sanitation. Focus on the vulnerable group helps in human rights documentation.The research also reveals disparities and human rights violations within groups, namely discrimination. Research on the state’s shortcomings in safeguarding the right to basic health care was conducted through generating working papers on the health status and health care access for vulnerable groups such as women, adolescents, elderly, sexual minorities and the disabled. These well-researched papers, provide evidence based recommendations for improving access to health care facilities.

Legal Research: Case Laws on Right to Health

Analysis of constitutional provisions and international health related covenants, declarations etc. are undertaken to contextualise the progress of health and healthcare in India. A status report on India’s position vis-à-vis international commitments on health issues is being compiled and information on the present constitutional and legal position of healthcare as a right is being collected. Legal research involves analytical compilation of case law on health/medical issues, in collaboration with India Centre for Human Rights and Law (ICHRL), Mumbai. Research is being done to compile cases from various High Courts of India and the Supreme Court, for an analysis of Right to Health Care in the Indian context. A book titled, ‘Health Care Case Laws’, is being coordinated with ICHRL. The legal research would influence public, political and judicial opinion on the issue and strengthening of advocacy efforts especially towards Public Interest Litigation (PIL) and draft bill.

Unit Cost Study

A primary study on Unit Cost analysis was undertaken with the objective of assessing the cost involved in delivering some selected health care services ranging from primary to tertiary levels and determining the Unit Costs of these selected services at different levels of delivery. Data was collected from the health services located in Pune and Ahmednagar districts of Maharashtra. The study revealed certain shortcomings--poor financial management in terms of record-keeping and maintenance of accounts, both in the public and in the private facilities, and a refusal from the private sector to share information on the income and expenditure vis-à-vis utilisation of the services. The draft report of the study is ready.