Need to create health facilities in rural areas: Azad

New Delhi: Admitting that a huge population, especially those in rural India, still do not have access to proper health facilities, Union Health Minister Ghulam Nabi Azad today stressed the need for creating facilities that are affordable to all.

Azad also said that efficiency of health care delivery can be enhanced by using information and technology in health care.

"Despite constant efforts by both the government and private sector health providers there is still a huge population without adequate access to comprehensive health facilities," he said, while addressing the India Health Summit organised by CII.

"There is a low penetration of health care services due to the fact that majority of secondary and tertiary health care facilities are in cities and towns, far away from rural areas, where 75 per cent of population lives," he said.

Keeping in view the size of our population and wide variations in the social economic and geographical conditions, Azad said there is a need for efficient, high quality, specialised treatments, which should be affordable, transparent and accessible.

Azad billed that the Indian healthcare industry is expected to reach USD 100 million by 2015.

In order to provide efficient and affordable healthcare, Azad said that Public-Private Partnership Model (PPP) need to be explored in a big way.