Activity status, morbiditypatterns
and hospitalisation in India
Trends in life expectancy across both developed and developing
countries show that people are living longer. In line with these global
developments mortality rates in India have decreased, which has led
to significant gains in life expectancy. Figure 6.1 shows that the crude
birth rate1 has more than halved over the last century. There has also
been a steady fall in crude death rates2 from a high of 47 in 1911–21
to a low of just over 7 in 2010. This fall in
The rapid economic growth of the past few decades has radically transformed India’s labour market, bringing millions of former agricultural workers into manufacturing industries, and, more recently, the expanding service industries, such as call centres and IT companies.
Alongside this employment shift has come a change in health and health problems, as communicable diseases have become less common, while non-communicable diseases, like cardiovascular problems, and mental health issues such as stress, have increased.
This interdisciplinary work connects those two trends to offer an analysis of the impact of working conditions on the health of Indian workers that is unprecedented in scope and depth.
will result in major shifts in morbiditypatterns.
These, coupled with the continuing advance of
high-cost medical technologies, mean that we will
almost inevitably see cost inflation levels in health
services running considerably higher than national
Faced with the tensions between expansionary
pressures within and without the health service,
and macro-economic pressures to control expen-
diture, the government in this country has tended
to respond in two ways. The first is a search
for increased efficiency, often associated with
attempts to shift the
Third, though some attempts have been made in identifying the
risk factors of NCDs, no study has examined the links between
occupation and diseases pattern in India. Thus, understanding the
role of occupational differentials in NCDs is essential for reducing
inequalities in health.
In Chapter 6, Dr Sahoo examined the association between activity
status, morbiditypatterns and hospitalisation in India. He found
differences in disease patterns and rates of hospitalisation across regions
and by economic activity status using the 60th round of National