Picture This: How much do states spend on healthcare?

14 May 2021 | Budget, Coronavirus, Covid, Healthcare

Ankur Bhardwaj

Ankur Bhardwaj

Editor, Centre for Economic Data and Analysis


The coronavirus pandemic has put the spotlight on India’s healthcare expenditure. Government Healthcare Expenditure (GHE) is the most important factor in shaping Indian healthcare system. According to NHA Estimates 2016-17, states account for 68.1 percent of all GHE in India.

In the chart above, we look at per capita healthcare expenditure by 21 states over a ten-year period (2010-11 to 2019-20).

Total state government spending on healthcare includes two components, viz. revenue expenditure on healthcare and capital disbursement for healthcare. The chart shows the change in per capita expenditure by state governments on healthcare. For example, Delhi spent Rs 1,367 per capita on healthcare in 2010-11 which increased to Rs 2,938 in 2019-20. If we rank these 21 states based on per capita expenditure in that particular year, Delhi is ranked 1st through most of this ten-year period but takes the 3rd spot in 2020-21, with J&K upstaging it. 

Chhattisgarh had a per capita state expenditure of Rs 288 in 2010-19 making it the 16th ranked state out of these 21 states. In 2019-20, it spent Rs 1,751 on a per capita basis, taking its rank to 6. Similarly, Odisha’s per capita expenditure on healthcare has gone up from Rs 252 (2010-11) to Rs 1,424 (2019-20), thereby improving its rank from 20 to 9. Haryana has increased per capita expenditure from Rs 384 to Rs 1,733 in the same period, improving its rank from 12th in 2010-11 to 7th in 2019-20, while Assam’s ranking has gone from 11th to 4th.

Andhra Pradesh has seen its rank go down from 4th in 2010-11 to 17th in 2019-20, owing to slow increase in state expenditure on healthcare.

The position of Bihar, Jharkhand, and Uttar Pradesh has largely remained unchanged in this ten year period and they have stayed at the bottom three spots. For perspective, Uttar Pradesh spent Rs 689 per capita in 2019-20 on healthcare which is less than what Andhra Pradesh spent in 2010-11 (Rs 696).


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