Budget 2023: Overall impetus for healthcare delivery sector missing, says Aster DM Healthcare Founder

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“The Union Budget 2023-24 has excellent focus on skill development and addresses one of the core challenges that the healthcare industry is facing today – shortage of nursing staff, through the announcement to start 157 nursing colleges alongside existing medical colleges. According to a World Health Organization (WHO) report published last year, India would require at least 4.2 million more trained nurses by 2024 to take care of its over 1.44 billion expected population. The current ratio of nurses and the population stands at a poor 1.7 nurses per 10,000 persons, which is much lower than the WHO recommendation of 4 nurses for 10,000 persons.

However, the overall impetus for the healthcare delivery sector is missing. We were hoping for an increase in budget allocation for the industry which is essential to fulfil the need gaps. The need to have more hospitals and healthcare facilities in rural and suburban areas to meet the rising demand remains untouched. Hope the government would put more focus on public- private partnerships (PPP) to address this,

We were also hoping for concessions for NRIs residing abroad like reduction on TDS for those who have a source of income in India and are required to pay taxes in the country they reside in, flight prices, health scheme for those who are returning to India to retire, among others. However, these remain untouched as well.”

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