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India spends 4.2% of its GDP on healthcare

According to World Health Statistics 2011 published by World Health Organisation (WHO), the public and private expenditure on health as percentage of gross domestic product (GDP) in India was 1.36 per cent and 2.84 per cent respectively, in 2008.

In a written reply to a question in the Rajya Sabha on Tuesday, the union minister of health and family welfare Ghulam Nabi Azad said one of the reasons for low public expenditure on health in India is the low tax to GDP ratio.

According to the health minister, the government has taken several steps to increase public health expenditure, which include launching of National Rural Health Mission to provide affordable and quality healthcare services to poor people, implementation of programmes for control of communicable and non-communicable diseases, mainstreaming of Indian system of medicine and Homeopathy, and making available specialized healthcare services through strengthening of hospitals.

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