Role of the Government in Health: NCERT 7th CBSE Social Studies Civics Chapter 02
Question: What do people expect from government in a democracy?
Role of the Government in Health Answer:
- In a democracy people expect the government to work for their welfare.
- This is done through the provision of education, health, employment, housing, development of roads, electricity etc.
Question: What is health? Explain the factors that affect health.
Answer: Health: Health means our ability to remain free of (from) illness and injuries.
- Health is not only about disease. It is also associated with other factors.
- Apart from disease we need to think of other factors that affect our health.
- There are other factors that influence our health.
- If people get clean drinking water or a pollution free environment they are likely to be healthy.
- Conversely if people do not get adequate food to eat or have to live in dirty conditions they will become victims to illnesses.
- All of us always like to be active and in good spirits.
- It is not healthy to be dull, inactive, anxious or scared for long stretches of time. We all need to be free from mental strain.
Healthcare in India: Role of the Government in Health
Question: What are the improvements in healthcare facilities in India?
Answer: There are many developments like:
- Largest number of medical colleges in the world.
- Approximately 15,000 new doctors every year.
- About 18,218 hospitals by year 2000.
- Extension of medical tourism due to low cost of treatments.
- Fourth largest producer of medicines.
Question: Write some of the negative aspects of our healthcare system.
Answer: The following are some of the drawbacks of our healthcare:
- Most doctors settle in urban areas, less doctors in rural areas.
- Two million cases of malaria and five lakh cases of tuberculosis every year.
- Water borne communicable diseases like diarrhoea, hepatitis on the rise. About 21% has no access to clean water.
- Half of all children are mal-nourished.
- Private health on rise and Public health care system has not grown as per the need.
Question: What do we need to prevent and treat diseases?
- In order to prevent and treat illnesses we need appropriate healthcare facilities.
- They are health centers, hospitals, laboratories for testing, ambulance services, blood banks, etc.
- They can provide the required care and services that patients need.
- In order to run these facilities we need health workers, nurses, qualified doctors and other health professionals who can advise, diagnose and treat illnesses.
- We also need medicines and equipment that are necessary for treating patients.
Question: Give an account of the position of healthcare services in India.
Answer: Healthcare Services in India:
- India has a large number of doctors, clinics and hospitals.
- It also has considerable experience and knowledge, in running a public healthcare system. This system of hospitals and health centers is run by the government.
- It has the ability to look after the health of a large section of its population scattered over lakhs of villages.
- There has been a phenomenal improvement in medical sciences with many new technologies and treatment procedures. [Refer to data on Page 20 NCERT column one.]
Question: How can we say that health situation in India is very poor?
- It is said that health situation in our country is very poor.
- We are not able to provide proper healthcare facilities to people.
- Our country has the money, knowledge and people with experience but cannot make the necessary healthcare available to all because of certain short-comings on our part.
The Cost of a Cure: Role of the Government in Health
Question: What is the story board about?
Answer: This story board is about Aman a child of poor parents and Ranjan belonging to a well to do family. Both suffered from viral fever and got treated at different places.
Question: What was Ranjan’s experience of his treatment?
Answer: Ranjan was taken to a big private hospital. It had best of the facilities. His father had to pay? 500/ to meet the doctor. He further prescribed some tests. The tests were done in a friendly atmosphere and results were given quickly.
Doctors went through the results which were all fine. He prescribed a lot of medicines for viral fever and rest. The whole thing cost more than Rs. 3500.
Question: Where was Aman taken for his treatment?
Answer: Aman was taken to a government hospital where his father stood in a queue for a long time. The doctor upon examining him prescribed some tests. They again stood in line to get tests done. The reports came after three days.
They again went to the doctor who prescribed just one fever reducing medicine. The entire cost was only? 150.
Public and Private Health Care Services: Role of the Government in Health
Question: What are the two categories of healthcare services?
Answer: There are two broad categories of healthcare services.
- Public health services.
- Private health facilities.
Public Health Services
Question: Explain the main features of Public Health Services.
Answer: Main features of Public Health Services:
- Public Health Service is a chain of health centers and hospitals run by the government.
- They are linked together to cover both rural and urban areas.
They provide treatment to all kinds of problems from common illnesses to special services.
- At the village level there are health centers.
- It usually has a nurse and a village health worker.
- They are trained in dealing with common illnesses.
- They work under the supervision of doctors at the Primary Healthcare (PHC).
- This center covers many villages in a rural area.
- At the district level is the District Hospital.
- It supervises all the health centers.
- Large cities have many government hospitals like the one where Aman was taken and also specialized government hospitals like the ones in Hakim Sheik’s story.
Question: What are the reasons for the health services to be called public?
Answer: The health service is called ‘public’ for many reasons.
- They fulfill their commitment of providing healthcare to all citizens.
The government has established these hospitals and health centers.
- The resources needed to run these services are obtained from the money that we the public pay to the government as taxes.
- These services are meant for everyone.
- One of the most important aspects of the public health system is quality healthcare services either free or at a low cost.
- Even the poor can seek treatment there.
- Another important function of public health is to take action to prevent the spread of diseases like TB, malaria, jaundice, cholera, diarrhoea, chikungunya etc.
- These services are organised by the government with the participation of
Question: What kind of campaigns are organised by the government?
Answer: Governments organizes awareness campaigns with people participation. For example mosquitoes should not be allowed to breed in coolers, rooftops etc.
Question: What did the Court say in the case of Hakim Sheik?
- According to Indian Constitution, it is the primary duty of the government to ensure the welfare of the people.
- It also lays emphasis to provide healthcare facilities to all.
- The government must safeguard the right to life of every person.
- The Court said that the difficulty that Hakim Sheik had to face could have cost him his life.
If a hospital cannot provide timely medical treatment to a person it means that
- The Court also said that it was the duty of the government to provide the necessary health services with treatment in emergency situations.
- Hospitals and medical staff must fulfill their duty of providing the necessary treatment.
- Hakim Sheik was denied treatment at various government hospitals.
- Therefore, the Court asked the State Government to give him the money that he had spent on his treatment.
Private Health Facilities: Role of the Government in Health
Question: Explain the major features of private health services.
Answer: Problems faced by Aman
- Non-availability of doctors.
- Junked and non-operational equipment.
- Non-availability of medicines.
- Indifference of doctors etc.
- Proper and strict administration can get the hospitals work in better manner.
Question: What are private health facilities?
Answer: Private Health facilities are not owned to controlled by the government. There patients have to pay for every service they use.
Now we have more of private facilities. These may be run by large companies that manufacture or sell medicines.
Question: Is adequate healthcare available to all of us? Explain.
Answer: Adequate healthcare is not available to all.
- Private facilities are increasing but the Public services are not.
- Private services are concentrated in urban areas and are costly.
- Poor have to go to Public services which are crowded. They have to borrow money in case of an illness in the family.
- Sometime wrong practices are encouraged to earn more money—like prescribing unnecessary medicines or tests.
- Only about 20% can afford all the medicines required and more than 40% have to borrow money.
- In case of women and tribal areas the health concerns are ignored.
Question: ‘Medical expenses cause hardship for all’. Explain the statement.
Answer: Private healthcare is more widespread than public healthcare.
- Private healthcare run for profit. They prescribe costly tests medicines etc.
- Doctors prescribe unnecessary injections, saline bottles instead of cheaper methods like tablets.
- Even those who might not be poor are unable to afford the treatment.
- About 40% of all admitted patients have to borrow money to pay for medical expenses.
Question: How is illness in a poor family a cause of great anxiety and distress?
- To the poor every illness in the family is a cause of great anxiety and distress.
- In poor families this situation tends to happen again and again. The poor are generally undernourished.
- These families are not eating as much as they should. They are not provided basic necessities like drinking water, adequate housing, clean surroundings, etc. Hence, they are more likely to fall ill.
- The expenses on illness make their condition even worse.
- Sometimes money is not the problem for getting proper medical treatment.
- Women are not taken to a doctor in a prompt manner.
- Their health concerns are considered to be less important than the health of men in the family.
- Many tribal areas have few health centers and they do not run properly. Even private health services are not available to the tribal.
Question: What can be done to remove inequality in healthcare services?
- Health condition of the people in our country is not good as they do not have equal access to health services.
- It is the responsibility of the government to provide quality healthcare services to all its citizens, especially the poor and the disadvantaged.
- Health is dependent on basic amenities and social conditions of the people. Hence, it is important to improve the health conditions of our people. And this can be done.
The Kerala Experience:
Question: Give an account of the Kerala experience about healthcare services.
Answer: The Kerala Experience: In 1996, the Kerala government made some major changes in the state.
- 40 per cent of the entire state budget was given to Panchayats. They plan and provide for their requirements. This is made possible for a village to make proper planning for water, food, women’s development and education.
- As a result, water supply schemes were checked, the working of schools and anganwadis was ensured and specific problems of the villages were taken up.
- Health centers were also improved.
- All of this helped to improve the situation.
- Despite these efforts, some problems like shortages of medicines, insufficient hospital beds, dearth of doctor remained and these need to be addressed.
The Costa Rican Approach:
Question: Discuss the Costa Rican Approach about Health.
Answer: Costa Rican Approach about Health
- Costa Rica is one of the healthiest countries in South America.
- The main reason for this is found in the Costa Rican Constitution.
- Costa Rica took a very important decision not to have an army.
- This helped the Costa Rican government to spend the additional money on health, education and other basic needs of the people.
- The Costa Rican government believes that a country has to be healthy for its development.
- It plays a lot of attention to the health of its people.
The Costa Rican government provides basic services and amenities to all its people.
- It provides safe drinking water, sanitation, nutrition and housing.
- Health education is also considered very important.
- Knowledge about health is an essential part of education at all levels.
Question: Fill in the blanks with appropriate words:
- It is the responsibility of the ……………….. to provide proper healthcare facilities to all.
- ………………… is one of the healthiest country in North America.
- The resources needed to run public health services are obtained from ……………. .
- In Kerala ……………………….. % of entire budget is given to Panchayats.
- Costa Rica
Question: State whether the given statements are true or false.
- Blood required for a patient is generally available at medicine bank.
- Hakim Sheik was denied treatment at the government hospitals.
- RMP means rural medical practitioner.
- Diarrhoea is a water borne disease.
Question: In this chapter you have read that health is a wider concept than illness. Look at this quote from the Constitution and explain the terms ‘living standard’ and ‘public health’ in your own words.
An important part of the Constitution says it is the “duty of the state to raise the level of nutrition and the standard of living and to improve public health”.
Answer: Living standard means the level of living of people at which they live. If they live in hygienic conditions enjoying all the comforts of life, it means their living standard is high. On the contrary, if they are bound to live in a filthy surroundings and drink polluted water and eat unhygienic foods, it means they lead a low standard of living.
Public health. It refers to the health of the general public.
Question: What are the different ways through which the government can take steps to provide healthcare for all? Discuss.
Answer: The government can take steps to provide healthcare for all by:
- Increasing the number of hospitals, healthcare centers and family welfare centers.
- Organizing free camps for check up of general public.
- Organizing Pulse Polio campaigns.
- Spreading health awareness among common people through different means. Workshops, seminars and training camps can also prove to be effective ways.
Question: What differences do you find between private and public health services in your area? Use the following table to compare and contrast these.
Question: ‘Improvement in water and sanitation can control many diseases’. Explain with the help of examples.
Answer: Water and sanitation are the basic necessities for the maintenance of our health. Poor quality of water causes a lot of health problems. Similarly poor sanitation causes many epidemics giving birth to dangerous insects and worms. Recently we saw the spread of Dengue caused by Aedes (a mosquito). Malaria is also caused by a mosquito called anopheles. Improvement in water and sanitation can control these happenings.
Question: What do people in a democratic country expect the government?
Answer: People in a democratic country expect the government to work for their welfare.
Question: Where do most doctor prefer to settle?
Answer: Most doctors prefer to settle in urban areas.
Question: Name some water borne diseases.
Answer: Diarrhoea, worms, hepatitis.
Question: What problem do rural people face whenever they come in a grip of an illness?
Answer: They have to travel long distances to reach a doctor.
Question: What do we need to prevent and treat illnesses?
Answer: We need appropriate healthcare facilities such as health centers, hospitals laboratories for testing, ambulance services, etc.
Question: What do you mean by a public health care system?
Answer: This is a system of hospitals and health centers run by the government.
Question: What happened to Hakim Sheik?
Answer: One evening in 1992, he accidentally fell off a running train and suffered head injuries.
Question: Why did Hakim Sheik file a case in the court?
Answer: Hakim Sheik filed a case in the court because of the indifferent attitude of various government hospitals that refused to admit him.
Question: Who got costly medical treatment – Aman or Ranjan?
Answer: Ranjan got costly medical treatment.
Question: What did the court ask the State Government in Hakim Sheik case?
Answer: The court asked the State Government to give Hakim Sheik the money that he had spent on his treatment.
Question: What is full form of RMPs? Where are they found?
Answer: Registered Medical Practitioners. They are found in the rural areas.
Question: Where are private services, easily available?
Answer: Private services are easily available in urban areas.
Question: Why are poor people more likely to fall ill?
Answer: Poor people are more likely to fall ill because they are not provided basic necessities like drinking water, adequate housing, clean surroundings etc.
Question: Why are women not taken to a doctor in a prompt manner?
Answer: It is because women’s health concerns are considered to be less important than the health of men in the family.
Question: Define health in broader prospective.
Answer: The common definition of health is the ability of a person to remain free of illness and injuries. But health is not only about disease. It is something more than that. Apart from disease, we need to think of other factors such as safe drinking water, clean surroundings etc. because they affect our health in various ways. If people fail to get these basic amenities of life, they will fall ill. Being active and in good spirits are also essential part of health. We also need to be without mental stress, because we cannot be healthy for a long time if we are under mental strain.
Question: Mention some positive aspects of healthcare in India.
Answer: Some positive aspects of healthcare in India are:
- India has a good number of doctors, clinics and hospitals. It is among the largest producers of doctors.
- Healthcare facilities have grown substantially over the years. The number of hospitals grew from 11,174 in 1991 to 18,218 in 2000.
- India gets a large number of medical tourists from several countries. They come for treatment in some of the world famous hospitals in India.
- India is the fourth largest producers of medicines in the world and also a large exporter of medicines.
Question: What are the negative aspects of healthcare in India?
Answer: The negative aspects of healthcare in India are:
- Rural people face the crisis of doctors, because most doctors settle in urban areas. They have to travel long distances to reach a doctor.
- About live lakh people die from tuberculosis every year. Almost two million cases of mal aria are reported every year.
- Clean drinking water is not available to all. As a result poor people easily become prey to various waterborne diseases such as diarrhoea worms, hepatitis etc.
- Half of all children in India do not get adequate food to eat and are undernourished.
Role of the Government in Health Question: Write down the main features of public health system.
Answer: The main features of public health system are:
- It provides quality healthcare services either free or at a low cost so that even the poor can seek treatment.
- It takes action to prevent the spread of diseases such as tuberculosis, malaria, jaundice, etc. Time to time it takes up a campaign to see that mosquitoes do not breed in water-coders, roof tops etc.
- This system is available in both rural and urban areas.
Question: What did the court say in the case of Hakim Sheik?
Answer: The court said that the difficulty that Hakim Sheik had to face could have cost him his life. If a hospital cannot provide timely medical treatment to a person, it means that the protection of life is not being given. The court also said that it was the duty of the government to provide the necessary health services, including treatment in emergency situations. Hospitals and medical staff must fulfill their duty of providing essential treatment. As various government hospitals refused to admit him, the State Government was asked to give Hakim Sheik the money that he had spent on his treatment.
Question: How can you say that adequate healthcare is not available to all?
Answer: We can say without any doubt that adequate healthcare is not available to all in our country. The reason is that private services are increasing but public services are not. As a result private services are mainly available to people. But these services are concentrated in urban areas and are very expensive. Poor people hardly afford them whenever there is illness in the family, they either borrow money or sell some of their possessions to pay for the expenses. Thus, medical expenses cause great hardship for the poor. Therefore, they avoid to go to a doctor unless it is very urgent.
It has been found that women are not taken to a doctor in a prompt manner. Their health concerns are easily ignored. Many tribal areas have few health centers and they do not run properly.
Question: Compare public health services with those of private health services.
Role of the Government in Health Answer:
- Public health services are run by the government while private health services are managed by the individuals or companies.
- Public health services provide health care facilities either free or at a low cost so that even the poor can seek treatment easily. Thus, money-making is not a goal of public health services. So far private health services are concerned, they are run mainly for profit. They usually prescribe expensive medicines. It is common for private doctors to prescribe unnecessary medicines, injections or saline bottles when tablets or simple medicines can suffice.
- Public health services are found both in rural and urban areas. But private health services are concentrated in urban areas.
- We often find huge rush at the government hospitals. People have to wait for hours in a long queue. But private hospitals are maintained properly. People don’t face such long queues there.
Role of the Government in Health Question: What is Costa Rican approach? Explain.
Answer: Costa Rica is a country in North America. It is considered to be one of the healthiest countries in the continent. The Costa Rican govt, gave much importance to the health of its citizens. It took an important decision and decided not to have an army. In this way it saved money and began to spend this money on health, education and other basic needs of the people. The Costa Rican government believes that a country has to be healthy for its development and pays a sincere attention to the health of its people. The Costa Rican government provides all the basic services and amenities to all the people of the country. It provides clean drinking water, sanitation, nutrition and housing. Health education has been made an important part of the education and at all levels students are provided knowledge about health.
The Costa Rican approach towards health is praiseworthy and inspiring.
Question: What major changes were made by the Kerala government in the state in 1996?
Answer: The Kerala government made some major changes in the state in 1996. It gave 40% of the entire state budget to panchayats so that they could plan and provide for their requirements. This made it possible for a village to make sure that proper planning was done for water, food, women’s development and education. In this way water supply schemes were checked, the working of schools and anganwadis was ensured and specific problems of the village were taken up. Health centers were also improved.
Inspite of all these efforts, some problems such as shortage of medicines, insufficient hospital beds, not enough doctors still exist and these are needed to be solved.