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CROWDED CROSSING

The chasm in India’s healthcare system forces many people to turn to crowdfunding

REUTERS/Cathal McNaughton
Inclusive health.
  • Manavi Kapur
By Manavi Kapur

Culture and lifestyle reporter

Indians are under-insured, public healthcare schemes are insufficient, and private medical facilities are expensive. In the gaping chasm between its private and public healthcare systems, medical crowdfunding platforms like Milaap, Ketto, and ImpactGuru have become a crucial bridge.

The country of 1.3 billion spends a mere 1.28% of its GDP on health, according to the government’s own estimates. Public healthcare is not universally free, but rather consists of a patchwork of free or subsidized primary care services that vary across states and often do not cover more significant treatment. As a result, India has one of the highest proportion of out-of-pocket expenses for medical bills in the world. These healthcare expenses pushed 55 million Indians into poverty in 2017, according to a study by the Public Health Foundation of India.

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