Making Health and Development a Reality for the people of India

Independent Commission on Development and Health in India (ICDHI) was set up in 1995. The Commission comprises of distinguished persons from the health and development sectors.

The Commission aims at assessing the development and health situation of the country through policy research and analysis, in depth surveys, focus group discussions, public hearings and round table conferences with development workers, policy makers and people. The Commission works closely with the Prime Minister’s office, Ministry of Health and Family Welfare, Planning Commission, Non-Government organisations, Panchayati Raj institutions at the grassroots and other relevant forums. The first report of the Commission was released in 1998 by the Prime Minister and was also presented to the President of India and Joint Consultative Committee of Parliament. The Report was widely distributed, discussed and debated in different fora. ICDHI’s constant endeavour has been to facilitate the process of need based, effective, sustainable and people centric development. The first report was a summarized version of voluminous reports prepared by the Commission over two long years of painstaking but rewarding process. Some of the significant chapters were updated and published as separate monographs. The second Report of the Commission particularly addressed the issues of Poverty Alleviation and Governance of Social Sector. This was particularly keeping in mind, the poor performance of the Nation in both these areas.

Since then 22 well-researched monographs on various current health and development issues, by eminent social scientists have been published.

Current Policy Research Agenda

Inadequate resources for the Health sector
In spite of clear recommendations of the Macroeconomic Commission of Health in India and Independent Commission, the health budget more or less remains static. It remains lowest in Asia. This is particularly alarming for developing economy like India. The situation has got further complicated with the implementation of recommendation of 14th Finance Commission. The Commission will try to pull together all the facts to understandthe current allocation for Health at both Centre and States and will continue to do vigorous advocacy for increase in budget allocation for Health Sector.

A reliable Health Information System as an important tool for the management of Health programmesin India
The Commission has observed the inconsistencies in information and data being reported by various national healthprogrammes. A considerable amount of data and information is being collected from all over the country at each and every level of health system. The process of data collection demands huge amount of human resources and their time. Often the data collected is unreliable. More importantly, these data are not being effectively utilized as a vigorous management tool to improve the quality of ongoing programmes.The Commission is proposing to work on this issue systematically to provide clear sustainable recommendations to the Ministry for further action.

Quality care at reasonable cost in ever growing Private Health Care Sector
The cascading cost for health services in the private health care sector is a matter of considerable concern. The mechanism to assure the quality care being provided by them is missing. This is particularly a serious matter when we observe that in many areas, the private sector is gradually occupying the space usually reserved for public sector. The Commission will look into this whole matter including Clinical Establishment Act.

Private Sectors are also involved in running private medical colleges. Unfortunately there are so many complaints about the quality of education being provided by them and their criteria for admissions. The Commission will review this situation.
Important Policy Research Works

• Report of Independent Commission of Development and Health in India
• National Profile on Women’s Health and Development
• State of India’s Health
• National Commission on Macroeconomics and Health
• Governance of the Health Sector in India - Has the State Abdicated its Role
• Review of the National Rural Health Mission
• Financing of Healthcare
• Mainstreaming AYUSH
• Update on Health and Development Status in India
Important Policy Interventions and Campaigns

• Revised National Health Policy
• National Population Policy
• National Rural Health Mission
• Tobacco Legislation
• Reproductive and Child Health
• Rational Drugs and Rational Drug Policy
• National Programme of Action on the Use Of Pesticides
Making Universal Healthcare A Reality With Effective Public Health Legislation In India
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