“Workforce requirement for the healthcare sector is expected to grow from 35.9 lakh in 2013 to 74 lakh in 2022,” NSDC said in a statement.
Besides, the size of the healthcare sector is expected to grow to Rs 9.64 lakh crore by 2017, it added.
At present, healthcare spending in India stands at less than 5 per cent of GDP, as compared to other developed countries, while out-of-pocket expenditure comprises about 92 per cent of private expenditure as compared to international average of nearly 50 per cent.
With a diverse range of medical services, there are over 11 lakh allied health professionals in the country in the fields of nursing associates, sanitarians, medical assistants, medical equipment operators, optometrists, traditional and faith healers, physiotherapists, dieticians and dental assistants, which is still short of the current demand.
The report further states that there is a significant gap in the availability of allopathic doctors (6.21 lakh) and it is a trend that is likely to continue into the next five years.
“There are over 7,50,000 registered Ayurveda, Yoga, Unani, Siddha and Homoeopathy (AYUSH) practitioners in the country. These numbers, when combined with the total number of physicians trained in allopathy, fulfil, to an extent, the total requirement of medical practitioners required in the country,” it pointed out.
According to the report, there are only 356 registered medical education institutions. The total admission capacity is nearly 45,000 students at the undergraduate level and about 24,000 students at the post-graduate level in the country.
The report observed that highly urbanised regions, including Delhi NCR, are heavily concentrated with healthcare facilities while rural regions remain underdeveloped.
“India has become one of the leading affordable destination for people looking for best medical care at cost much lower than that of developed countries.
“We can further leverage our position as a reasonably priced and quality healthcare solution provider, thus catering to a greater proportion of world population.
“Hence, there is a need for both qualitative and quantitative skill development initiatives in the healthcare sector. We also need to focus heavily on upgrading technical skills of the workforce for advanced healthcare services,” NSDC MD & CEO Dilip Chenoy said.