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The inequality of improvement: What the HAQ Index tells India

Access to healthcare has improved in India since 1990 – but not enough. Meanwhile, inequality persists. The country takes the 145th place out of 195 countries on the Healthcare Access and Quality (HAQ) Index. This measures the accessibility and quality of healthcare in countries by drawing on a plethora of data, including the 2016 Global […]

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As the Taj Mahal changes colour, pollution leaves Indian cities gasping for breath

The changing face of the Taj Mahal One of the most visible effects of India’s rapidly escalating pollution crisis is the changing face of one of its most iconic landmarks. The Taj Mahal, a marble mausoleum which stands 240 feet tall on the banks of Yamuna river in Agra, is famous for its ivory white

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Inequality between states harms health in India

‘Nations Within a Nation’ A groundbreaking new study published today in The Lancet spotlights a major concern about healthcare in India: the vast disparities between its states. ‘Nations Within a Nation’, touted as ‘the first comprehensive analysis of health in India’, shows that the ‘substantial gains in healthcare’ made by India in recent years have

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Gujarat: Leading the fight against thalassemia

Gujarat is expanding a number of prevention policies with the aim of making the state thalassemia free. Foremost among the proposed policies is the intention to make thalassemia testing mandatory for everyone, with a focus on testing women before they give birth. India is considered to be the world’s capital for thalassemia cases, with 10,000

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Hospitals breeding mosquito-borne disease

Hospitals are home to some of the most vulnerable in society: the sick and the elderly. What if these hospitals are putting these vulnerable people at risk of potentially more deadly conditions than they arrived with? This is currently the case in many hospitals in Lucknow, where the hospitals themselves have become breeding grounds for

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Marijuana for medical use: a possibility in India?

Medical marijuana is now a real possibility in India. The country’s first ever research and development (R&D) licence to cultivate cannabis and study its medicinal properties has been granted to the Council of Science and Industrial Research (CSIR) and the Bombay Hemp Company (BOHECO). The two organisations will collaborate on a project examining the potential

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Drones vs. mosquitoes: Gujarat Chief Minister’s solution

In the fight against malaria and other mosquito-borne diseases, could drones be the answer? Shankar Chaudhary, the Health Minister for Gujarat, seems to think so. At an event in May to launch an anti-malaria campaign in the state, he said “the mosquito is a terrorist…a silent killer.” To this end, the minister suggested, “we should

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Jammu and Kashmir: Poor practices in blood banks a threat to public safety

Infected blood is responsible for a colossal hepatitis epidemic in Jammu and Kashmir. This is according to an association representing many of the state’s doctors. According to Dr Nisar ul Hassan of the Doctors Association Kashmir (DAK), the problem is down to outmoded and inaccurate testing technology used by blood banks in J&K All 31 blood

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Here comes the sun: Solar energy to power up India’s health centres?

Solar power could be the answer to the energy woes of India’s health centres. A new scheme being piloted in the states of Haryana, Maharashtra, and Tamil Nadu is exploring solar power as the primary means of powering India’s health centres. It will be a joint effort between the Indian Council of Medical Research (ICMR)

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