China-India Comparative Health Resource Centre

China-India Comparative Health Resource Centre

China-India Comparative Health Resource Centre

Comparative studies of health systems are essential to the body of work on health and health care across the world. China and India have had very different political, economic and social histories that led to the emergence of divergent health systems and yet, in the present times the health sector reforms undertaken by both countries have been similar in nature. The Chinese health system has seen dramatic transformations due to the changing political and economic context while transformations in Indian health system have been more gradual. The health sector reforms in the present times have been informed by ideas of new public health management and commercialisation. For-profit interests are increasingly visible and there have been implications of these trends for comprehensiveness of services and equity. Hence, the comparisons that can be drawn from the two health systems of India and China would be of considerable interest.

The objective of the health resource centre is to build a repository on relevant issues on health systems in China; build a network with scholars, institutes and centres conducting research on health system in China; and conduct research on selected domains from a comparative perspective with India. These domains broadly include the process of health sector reforms; the characteristics of the public, for-profit and non-profit institutions in health; inequities in access, utilisation and quality of health services; the demographic and epidemiological transitions, disease control programmes and so on.

The Health Resource Centre at ICS has been awarded two projects by the Indian Council for Social Science Research (ICSSR): 


Commercialisation of Elderly Care in India and China: The Case of Delhi and Shanghai | ICSSR Project | May 2017 – April 2019 |

The review of literature on elderly care in China and India show the inadequacy in addressing the needs of an aging population in the context of increased economic prosperity and changing social fabric in terms of the family and community. What the literature does not seem to engage with is the highly differentiated needs of the elderly across classes and their ability to afford and articulate the need for services. In both these countries, the government is not providing the required services and therefore there is a role for profit and non-profit organisations in service provisioning ranging from medical care, personalised services and institutional care. This has serious consequences for the elderly and the family as they shift roles and responsibilities between and across these various actors for a range of supportive care that is required for ageing.

The study will assess the magnitude, socio-economic and demographic characteristics of the elderly in Delhi and Shanghai; study the plurality and characteristics of the services provided by the government, for-profit and non-profit providers;  To study the patterns of investment by national and foreign in this sector; To study the challenges of commercialisation of elderly care and its sustainability


India-China Comparative Health Resource Centre at the Institute of Chinese Studies | ICSSR Project | March 2014 – April 2016 |  

The main objective of the project was to assist in building a repository of all relevant issues on health and health care in China; to build networks and collaborations with scholars in universities and other institutes researching on health and health care systems in China; to conduct research on some selected domains on health systems in China; to publish occasional papers and to organize meetings/seminars.

Transnational Actors and Commercialisation of Health Care: A China-India Comparative | ICSSR project | April 2013-March 2015 

The study sought to identify the global actors and agencies and their role in health care. It looked at their contribution and investments and their influence on content of policy. These actors have contributed to changing the landscape of health services in India and China. 

Prof. Rama V. Baru, Adjunct Fellow, ICS and Professor, Centre of Social Medicine and Community Health, JNU

Madhurima Nundy, Associate Fellow, Institute of Chinese Studies


Health Service Systems in Transition: India and China

10-11 March 2015

Lecture Hall 2, Convention Centre, JNU, New Delhi.

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