The Evolution of Healthcare Industry in India

The Evolution of Healthcare Industry in India 

The healthcare industry in India includes hospitals, medical equipment, pharmacy, pharmaceutical research, global healthcare, health insurance, and more. Due to expanded coverage, services, and additional investment by both public and private investors, the healthcare industry in India is growing rapidly.

Healthcare Scenario in India 

However, the constitution of India guarantees free healthcare for Indian citizens, but, practically, the private healthcare sector has taken over a significant part of the healthcare industry in India, and most of the medical expenses are paid out of the pocket by patients and their family either through medical insurance or savings. All government-operated healthcare units are obliged to deliver free-of-cost healthcare services to Indian citizens. 

Before the 17th century, an ancient healthcare system was established in India. Modern medical science was introduced to India in the 17th century. Today’s healthcare industry in India is significantly relying on an extensive pool of healthcare professionals. Medical facilities in India are less expensive in comparison to other Asian and western countries. Medical units in the United States and European countries charge ten times more than India for surgery. 

Healthcare Infrastructure in India 

The healthcare industry in India is divided into two major segments:- the public sector and the private sector. 

Public Healthcare Units

The public or government healthcare system incorporates restricted secondary and medical facilities in major towns and cities, and they focus on providing basic healthcare services through PHCs (Primary Healthcare Centers) in rural and deprived areas. As per rules, these government healthcare units must provide free-of-cost medical facilities to BPL (Below the poverty line) cardholders. As a significant part of the healthcare industry in India, public health units share 18% of total outpatients and 44% of total inpatients in India. 

Majorly, lower middle class and BPL cardholders tend to depend on the public health sector for their healthcare needs compared to upper and middle-class citizens. Moreover, ladies and senior citizens visit public health units more frequently. However, the public health sector was established to be an effective medium to access healthcare facilities irrespective of socioeconomic status. 

Private Healthcare Units 

The private sector provides the bulk of secondary, tertiary, and quaternary care facilities, emphasizing metropolitan areas and tier 1 and tier 2 cities. In the 1980s, private health providers joined the market with the support of several government incentives. The growth of the healthcare industry in India aided the expansion of the private health industry in India in the 1990s. After 2005, most new healthcare facilities were added in the private sector or collaboration with it. The private sector is responsible for 58 percent of the country’s hospitals, 29 percent of hospital beds, and 81 percent of doctors. According to the National Family Health Survey-3, the private medical sector is the primary healthcare source for 68% of families residing in rural areas and 70% living in urban areas. 

The Healthcare industry in India has witnessed tremendous growth and advancement over the years that even overseas patients prefer India and Indian medical institutions for their treatment. 

The healthcare industry in India is overgrowing, thanks to advances in technology and the expansion of numerous diseases across the country. People used to trust government doctors and hospitals, but they have grown more popular due to globalization and the availability of superior facilities and treatment at private hospitals. Various Private Hospitals are located around the country and handle patients from all over the world. They are known for their competent doctors and treatment facilities.

Medical Tourism in India 

If someone wants to measure developing trends of medical tourism or global healthcare, the healthcare industry in India is an ideal example.  Global healthcare or medical tourism is a term used to denote the practice of traveling across international borders to seek better and cost-efficient medical facilities. Such healthcare services seekers typically travel across the globe for optional procedures and intricate surgeries. 

Followings are the primary factor behind the growth of medical tourism in India. 

Healthcare Facilities 

The Healthcare Industry in India offers best-in-class and affordable healthcare facilities. The advancement in healthcare facilities has attracted many overseas patient. 

Cutting-Edge Technology 

Medical diagnoses and procedures are available in India using frontier technology. Complex cardiac surgeries, cancer treatment and surgeries, neuro and even general surgeries all require high-level skill to carry out procedures, minimize problems, allow for a speedy recovery, and shorten hospital stays. In India, contemporary developments such as robotic surgical support, radiation surgery, or radiotherapies with cyber-knife stereotactic capabilities, IMRT/IGRT, transplant support systems, and enhanced neuro and spinal alternatives are also available.

Doctors & Healthcare Experts

India encompasses the largest pool of doctors and medical experts in South Asia, with 1.2 million allopathic surgeons, 0.17 million dental surgeons, and 2 million nurses. It is the prime factor behind the considerable growth in the healthcare industry in India. Many of them have established their identity and become the best in the world with sheer professionalism. Therefore, access to budget-friendly healthcare facilities under the direction of world-class healthcare professionals attracts a large number of overseas patients every year.  

Financial Saving

Quality of care is something that attracts people, especially those who are seeking proper healthcare. However, quality services should not go beyond the financial capacity of the patient. 

Start-up India 

As numerous healthcare startups such as  DocPrime, Sprint Medical, Sidqam Technologies, Kindbody, Allara Health, BioMilq, Oula Health, Elda Health, Sugar. Fit, Medpho, etc. emerging in the healthcare industry in India, medical tourism is motivating, opening the doors for new establishments. 


One of the best healthcare providers globally, the majority of healthcare personnel in India are English speaking. Moreover, when it comes to other overseas languages, there are amply skilled translators available here. 

Benefits of Medical Tourism in India 

Concerning its nature, global healthcare considerably helps to strengthen the country’s economy in many ways. Some of them are mentioned below. 

Foreign Currency Exchange 

Every overseas patient spends an average of USD 3500-6000 as medical expenses in India, a noteworthy foreign exchange. 

Brotherhood & Goodwill 

Medical tourism as a part of the healthcare industry in India is establishing brotherhood with numerous overseas destinations, creating India’s goodwill globally. This helps Indian diplomats in securing India’s overseas interests and the betterment of bilateral relationships.  

Rising Economy 

States like Andhra Pradesh are benefiting from the flood of tourists seeking medical treatment.

Employment Development 

The inrush of patients and money into the healthcare industry in India results in creating jobs and opportunities, which aids in the resolution of the country’s unemployment situation.

Endorsing Alternate Healthcare Sciences 

It aids in developing Indian healthcare systems, including Ayurveda, Yoga & Naturopathy, Unani, Siddha, and Homeopathy.

The Healthcare Industry in India: Facts & Figures 

Increasing numbers of lifestyle diseases, rising demand for cost-efficient healthcare delivery systems because of expensive healthcare facilities, technological developments, the evolution of telemedicine, instant health insurance claim, and government actions such as e-health and tax benefits are impacting the healthcare industry in India.  

  • Growing at a Compound Annual Growth Rate of 16-17%, India’s hospital industry is witnessing a massive investment demand from domestic and overseas investors and is estimated to reach USD 132 billion by 2023. 
  • India’s medical tourism industry is expected to reach USD 9-10 billion from its current size of $3 billion by 2022. 
  • India’s diagnostics industry has a current value of USD 4 billion, in which the organized sector shares nearly 25% of it. 
  • The healthcare industry in India is estimated to reach USD 372 billion by 2022. 


In the post-independence era, India has made significant improvements in terms of health standards. Still, many people believe that the healthcare budget should be increased. International innovations in information technology must be utilized at the national level to document health data. The growing healthcare industry in India will significantly impact the international health scenario thanks to sustained efforts to regulate the country’s population and governmental determination to achieve the millennium development objectives in health