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ORIGINAL ARTICLE
Year : 2017  |  Volume : 146  |  Issue : 3  |  Page : 354-361

Cost of delivering secondary-level health care services through public sector district hospitals in India


1 School of Public Health, Postgraduate Institute of Medical Education & Research, Chandigarh, India
2 Department of Community Medicine, Pt. BD Sharma Post Graduate Institute of Medical Sciences, Rohtak, India
3 Department of Community Medicine, Dr. Rajendra Prasad Government Medical College, Kangra, India

Correspondence Address:
Dr Shankar Prinja
School of Public Health, Postgraduate Institute of Medical Education & Research, Sector 12, Chandigarh 160 012
India
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Source of Support: None, Conflict of Interest: None


DOI: 10.4103/ijmr.IJMR_902_15

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Background & objectives: Despite an impetus for strengthening public sector district hospitals for provision of secondary health care in India, there is lack of robust evidence on cost of services provided through these district hospitals. In this study, an attempt was made to determine the unit cost of an outpatient visit consultation, inpatient bed-day of hospitalization, surgical procedure and overall per-capita cost of providing secondary care through district hospitals. Methods: Economic costing of five randomly selected district hospitals in two north Indian States - Haryana and Punjab, was undertaken. Cost analysis was done using a health system perspective and employing bottom-up costing methodology. Quantity of all resources - capital or recurrent, used for delivering services was measured and valued. Median unit costs were estimated along with their 95 per cent confidence intervals. Sensitivity analysis was undertaken to assess the effect of uncertainties in prices and other assumptions; and to generalize the findings for Indian set-up. Results: The overall annual cost of delivering secondary-level health care services through a public sector district hospital in north India was ' 11,44,13,282 [US Dollars (USD) 2,103,185]. Human resources accounted for 53 per cent of the overall cost. The unit cost of an inpatient bed-day, surgical procedure and outpatient consultation was ' 844 (USD 15.5), ' 3481 (USD 64) and ' 170 (USD 3.1), respectively. With the current set of resource allocation, per-capita cost of providing health care through district hospitals in north India was ' 139 (USD 2.5). Interpretation & conclusions: The estimates obtained in our study can be used for Fiscal planning of scaling up secondary-level health services. Further, these may be particularly useful for future research such as benefit-incidence analysis, cost-effectiveness analysis and national health accounts including disease-specific accounts in India.


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