NITI Aayog comes up with health index

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To track the progress on health outcomes and health systems performance across country, the National Institution for Transforming India (NITI) Aayog has come up with a health index.

Health Index is a weighted composite score incorporating 24 indicators covering key aspects of health performance. The domains covered in the report are health outcomes, governance and information, and key inputs and processes, the Aayog said in a statement.

The think tank of India will release the fourth edition of “The Healthy States, Progressive India” ranking States performance on December 27.

In 2017, the NITI Aayog, in collaboration with the Ministry of Health and Family Welfare (MoHFW) and the World Bank, initiated an annual Health Index for tracking Overall Performance and Incremental Performance on health across all states and Union Territories (UTs).

“The objective of the Annual Health Index is to track progress on health outcomes and health systems performance, develop a healthy competition and encourage cross-learning among states and UTs,” the statement read.

Health Index Scores and rankings for states and UTs are generated to assess incremental performance (year-to-year progress) and overall performance (current performance). The exercise is expected to help drive state and union territories’ efforts towards the achievement of health-related Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs) including those related to Universal Health Coverage (UHC) and other health outcomes.

These Health Index Reports aims to nudge the states and union territories towards building robust health systems and improving service delivery. The importance of this annual tool is reemphasized by MOHFW’s decision to link this Health Index to incentives under National Health Mission.

The report has tried to shift the focus from budget spending, inputs, and outputs to outcomes.

The Health Index is a useful tool to measure and compare the overall performance and incremental performance across states and union territories over time and is an important instrument in understanding the variations in performance across various parameters including health outcomes, governance, and data integrity, and key inputs and processes.

It has strengthened the culture of use of data at the state and union territory level to monitor performance and is contributing to the agenda of improving the availability, quality, and timeliness of data in most states and union territories.

Through the report, the annual performance of the state and union territories gets monitored at the highest level of the government, the statement added.

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