In budget 2017, Arun Jaitley gave flailing public health programs little hope

At a time when the country is grappling with perilous effects of demonetisation, Finance Minister Arun Jaitley was expected to be sensitive to the suffering of millions of Indians and enhance the social safety nets in the form of expansion of employment, education, health, food and nutrition. He has, instead, made some nominal increases in the rural sector and offered tax sops to the middle class. This increase in allocation appears mere tokenism when we compare it to price increases and expenditure cutbacks over last few years… Read the full article (Courtesy

Curbing malnutrition: What works in Africa doesn’t quite in India

Packaged fortified food, which showed remarkable results in treating children with Severe Acute Malnutrition (SAM) in Africa, has proved much less effective in a trial conducted in India. This has prompted concerned paediatricians and nutritionists to write a letter to the prime minister cautioning against “quick fixes” of buying commercial products instead of focusing on sustainable measures such as care support for mothers, clean drinking water and food security….  read whole story …(courtesy Times of India)

A year of apathy towards public health services

The past year once again provides a clear picture of neglect of public health by the BJP led government and further, a disdain towards policies that promote welfare. The year has seen several outbreaks of infectious diseases such as dengue and chikungunya, often reaching epidemic proportions in many parts of the country. The epidemics have laid bare the inability of the country’s health systems to protect people’s health. Yet successive budgets presented by the BJP government have strengthened the perception that this government is ideologically committed to reducing public expenditure on welfare and public services. The past year has again seen a singular reluctance, on the part of the government, to even spell out a clear approach to health care. The Niti Ayog has played its due role of a neoliberal right-wing think tank by consistently shooting down even mildly progressive proposals that have been put forward by the Ministry of Health….read full article here..

JSA Rajasthan Calls for Revamping Schemes of Free Medicines and Increasing Public Spending on Health Care

Jan Swasthya Abhiyan Rajasthan held a public dialogue “Jan Swasthya Adhikar Manch” here at Shaheed Smarak Jaipur to draw the government’s attention towards the depleting state of public health care services in the state. About 45 cases related to violation of health rights and patient’s rights were presented during the one day event and more than 300 people from across the state came together to voice for their health rights…read report here…

Chronicles of Deaths Foretold: Review of 139 maternal deaths in 2013-2015 among poor and marginalized communities across seven districts

This  report  documents  the  stories  of  about  140  women  who  did  not  survive  pregnancy  and childbirth.  These unfortunate stories from eastern UP, Jharkhand, Orissa and West Bengal provide us an important insight into how, despite all the policy efforts, many women continue to die. Maternal mortality is considered a preventable phenomenon and these case studies allow us to understand what worked in terms of current policy provisions and what did not, and we can learn important lessons on how the policy and programmatic provision can be improved to serve the needs of these women better…. read the full report here…

Jan Swasthya Abhiyan Expresses Concern and Shock at the Lifting of the ban order on 344 FDCs

The Jan Swasthya Abhiyan (JSA) expresses its deepest concern
and shock at the verdict of the Delhi High Court, lifting the ban
imposed on 344 Fixed Dose Combinations (FDCs) of drugs by the
Government a few months back. This is a huge setback to efforts
aimed at bringing a semblance of order into the absolute
anarchy that exist in India’s pharmaceutical market…Read the JSA Press Release

National Health Accounts Depicts The Crisis in the Health Sector

India continues to have one of the most privatised health systems in the world. India’s public health expenditure in terms of percent of GDP (1.15 percent) spent on healthcare places India at 12th from the bottom, in the company of countries such as Myanmar, Haiti, South Sudan, Timor-Leste and Pakistan.

THE union ministry of health and family welfare (MoHFW) supported National Health Systems Resource Centre (NHSRC) has recently published (August 2016) the National Health Accounts for 2013-14. While summary data for expenditures on health are published regularly, a rigorous estimate of health expenditure in the country is being published after a gap of ten years (after 2003-04). While overall estimates have been published, the document promises that “policy interpretations of the data will follow including estimation of expenditures by diseases, age and gender in the coming year”. Health expenditure relate data is an important planning tool as it provides information regarding the direction of public policy towards provision of healthcare and also provides insights into the financial burden faced by households while accessing healthcare services.

Read more….


6th Right to Food Convention in Ranchi

The 6th National Convention on Right to Food & Work was held from the 23 – 25 September, 2016 in Ranchi, Jharkhand. The convention saw the participation of over 2000 persons from all across the country. The parallel workshops and the plenaries came out with important resolutions on the issues that the campaign needs to focus on as well as some concrete plans for action. Some immediate points of action include a meeting on NREGA in November, a day of action at states on November 22nd on implementation of maternity entitlements and against destruction of PDS through Aadhar and PoS, workshops for youth on democratic rights and RTF and a meeting with NAPM on resource loot. A national campaign against the exclusion of beneficiaries from the PDS, pensions and other schemes because of the gaps in PoS machines and UID numbers will be the Call to Action from the workshop in Hindi and English

Report of National Workshop on Informalisation of Work in the Health Sector ( April 22-23, New Delhi)

Public Services International (PSI), Jan Swasthya Abhiyan (JSA) and Health Employees Union, Delhi (HEU) jointly organized a two day National level workshop on “Informalisation of Employment in the Health Sector” at Indian Social institute, New Delhi. The workshop was an effort to bring together public health activists, trade union representatives and organizations in the health sector to understand the nature and trends of informalisation of employment in the sector, to develop strategies to respond to the challenges posed by these trends and to create a platform for further joint work.

Read the workshop report here: psi-jsa-heu_workshopreport_final

Bilaspur Sterilisation Tragedy: A stock taking report

On 8th November 2014 a government Laparascopic Tubal Ligation (LTT) sterilisation ‘camp’ held in a private abandoned hospital in Takhatpur block in Bilaspur, Chhattisgarh, led to the death of thirteen women while several other women experienced serious medical complications. One year after the tragedy groups working in Chhattisgarh on health, women and legal rights, take stock of the steps / action taken by the government to provide relief to all those affected, the findings and the performance of the Judicial Commission that was set up to inquire into the violations, and the current scenario of family planning services including sterilization and women’s reproductive rights in the state. Read the full report…