How did Kerala get Public Health right, when rest of the country seemed to have got it wrong?

The standard of health services in Kerala has reached an impressive level compared to the rest of the states in India.

Kerala’s achievements in the health sector have been often cited as role models for the country. The State has a better health standard with low birth and death rate, high level of acceptance of family planning methods and increased life expectancy. Government of Kerala’s patient- friendly hospital mission AARDRAM provides quality services at all health levels. Accordingly, it is envisaged to convert primary health centres into family health centres in a phased manner in order to deliver effective family centred health services.

While providing quality healthcare affordable and acceptable to all, the State is also focused on making the public aware on the need to identify health needs and utilize health services by implementing various national health programmes. The availability of facilities for primary health care, their accessibility, the very high degree of awareness and acceptability among the people has made Kerala model an almost perfect one.
The state had pioneered Universal Health Care Services in the country and its palliative care service has largely been applauded. Kerala is also the only state to have a formal palliative care policy in the country.

Clinical Establishment Act and E-Health Project

The E-Health Project targets to link these numerous establishments all over Kerala. The project aims to build a database of individual medical records, easily accessible to the medical practitioners. This could avoid the repeated medical tests and can thereby reduce rush in clinics and labs. Easy access to the records could also speed up the distribution of benevolent funds. Act is under the review of the cabinet.

Health Care for the Differently Abled

Projects are in design to assist the differently-abled population of the state. Paediatricians will be given special training to detect mental health problems in children, if any, at an early stage of childhood. The project to run special Anganawadis for children in need is already in effect in Calicut district. Kannur, Kasargod, and Wayanad will follow suit immediately. Starting special centres in all the medical colleges for autistic children is also under the consideration of the government.

Care for Everyone

Special care will be given to the victims of HIV and Endosulfan. The inclusive health care policy of the government also guarantees quality service to the marginalized sections of the population, such as transgenders. A project has been designed in association with the Indian Medical Association to reduce causalities during labour.

Also, it needs to be stressed that the government will not tolerate attempts to build up an anti-scientific attitude. It has strongly dealt with the anti-vaccination campaigns promoted by a few conservative factions in the society. It ensured the effective administration of preventive medicines and vaccinations, for diseases such as Diphtheria and Poliomyelitis.
To go by the saying, prevention is better than cure.

Public Health Center, Poovattoor, Kollam,Kerala.
Public Health Center, Poovattoor, Kerala

Reference: https://kerala.gov.in/health-services

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