As the Demand for better health care across asia grows louder there is a dire need for more and better spending, and more widespred systems.
The demand for better social service across Asia is growing louder alongside the rising economic prospects of some 3.4 billion people. Topping the list is health care, an area that has come as a great challenge for the budgets and creativity of goverments while providing myriad opportunities for the private sector and demanding more from thousands of nonprofit organizations.
Countries in the region have varied health care system that range in quality and reach from the barely visible like in rural India or Laos to the large and comprehensive system in Taiwan, Hong Kong or South Korea. Still all these system face significant hurdles due eithe ti the need to expand or because costs have risen well beyond the capacity of the government to pay for them. One main challenge is system. Countries in Asia spend less than 5 percent of their GDP on health care. Developed countries in Europe and North America put up at lest twice that much.
The need for more attention to health care hasn't gone unnoticed. A wave of health care reform is sweeping Asia. In India, for example, the government has put health at the top of the list. "If we are going maintain a rate growth of 8 percent, which is very difficult, we have to focus on education and health" said India's minster of state for health and family welfare dinesh trivedi during a recent video conference in Hong Kong organized by the Economist Intelligence Unit.
India provides a good example of how badly poor health care can hurt a country. Most Indians living in villages, who account for more than 70 percent of the population, have very little access doctors or clinics, much less actual hospital. If left unchecked, the health problems of villagers could put the brakes on India's economic growth.(China Daily)