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Manpreet Singh
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It is a fundamental right to the standard of health included in article 21 of the constitution. It includes all basic requirements such as physical, mental and social well-being. It has also been recognized in many global and national declarations and charters. It has been now proved that a healthy population is a stepping stone for the sustainable development and growth of a country. Also for peace and security, and vice versa. But the ground reality is that despite many advances over the previous decades, large numbers of disadvantaged people, especially women who are heavily dependent on the patriarchal set up, still suffer poor health.
As a result, thousands die every day from preventable causes such as basic hygiene and nutrition. Women and children from each part of the social status continue to suffer a very high burden of preventable disease and death. A comprehensive study has noted improvements in population health will require a huge investment in the social and economic determinants that have slowed the progress. Developing a proper health insurance program to cater to the women and children of our society can help them hugely in improving their overall conditions.
Even though women are honored in almost all Indian cultures as the life-giver, but their low status of women continues and our policy makers are not making women’s survival and well-being a priority. The low status of women has prevented many women from expecting and demanding better treatment. Despite advances, made in the country in the last 70 years or so, women’s health care needs a complete revamping. Health insurance can be a powerful tool in improving the basic health conditions for women. It will make them independent in that front and they will not be dependent on the patriarchal families for their basic health facilities. It will also empower them to work and earn more freely as the main burden of health and hygiene will be removed from their problems.