Health is defined in the World Health Organization’s Constitution as “a state of complete physical, social and mental well-being and not merely the absence of disease or infirmity”. Thus health “is a positive concept emphasizing social and personal resources as well as physical capabilities”.
India is one of the fastest growing economy. Our GDP doubled between 2000 to 2014 with a projected growth of over 7% for this fiscal year. The Rural population in 2015, was 67% and urbanization is fast increasing with 2.4% annual growth. A ‘demographic dividend’ of 65% of under 35 years is challenged by a growing population of elderly – 8% of total population.
India has made great progress in health. It became polio free in 2014, eliminated guinea worm (2000), yaws and maternal and neonatal tetanus in 2016. Life expectancy is now 68 years; it was 33 in 1947.