Great Indian handicap: Men with disabilities spend more on healthcare than women

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By Chetana Belagere

May 19, 2024

The study, ‘Gender Inequality in Out-of-Pocket Expenditure on Healthcare Among Persons with Disabilities in India’, shed light on the stark gender inequalities in healthcare costs.

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Researchers used data from the National Sample Survey’s 76th round, which painted a concerning picture of out-of-pocket expenditure on healthcare across different states.

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According to the findings, the financial burden of healthcare is disproportionately higher for males in most regions, except in a few areas, where females spend more.

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Prof Denny John, co-author of the study said, “People with disabilities unduly suffer greater ill-health compared to the non-disabled population, mainly due to poverty.”

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Prof John felt that women, particularly those with disabilities, might have less access to healthcare services due to Cultural and societal norms.

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“Understanding and addressing these factors is crucial for improving healthcare access and equity for women with disabilities,” Prof John added.

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“There is a critical need for policies that specifically target the reduction of financial barriers for all genders, but particularly for women, to access healthcare services,” the authors said.

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