Our Work

Primary Care Pilot Program

Donors and Partners:
The Bill & Melinda Gates Foundation
Indian School of Business

Background:
Primary care is the backbone of an efficient health system. Primary care is also often a person’s first point of contact with the healthcare system. With proper primary care, healthcare providers can identify illness at its onset and before it becomes more severe and costly to treat. India, like in many countries across the world, faces major shortfalls in access to adequate primary care. These shortfalls result in restricted access to high quality health services for much of the rural population, high hospitalization rates, burdensome out of pocket payments, and poor health outcomes.

Program Objectives:
ACCESS Health and the Indian School of Business are working with the Bill & Melinda Gates Foundation to design and to assist the development of a transformative primary care program.

The aim of the program is to improve the efficiency of the healthcare system, the effectiveness of services, and overall health outcomes. The Primary Care Pilot Program uses private sector skills and resources to manage healthcare delivery in the public sector. It also restructures the way payments are made to providers, moving away from input based funding to outcome based funding. The program is expected to increase the use of public health services from twenty percent of the local population to eighty percent within four years.

This program builds on a research study that ACCESS Health completed for the Bill & Melinda Gates Foundation in 2013. ACCESS Health reviewed the literature on primary care in India. We also interviewed people working in fifteen primary health care delivery organizations. ACCESS Health has also studied primary care reforms in other countries to draw lessons for what might work well in India.

Impact:
ACCESS Health believes in measurement and accountability for all its programs. As part of the Primary Care Pilot Program, ACCESS Health has engaged an outside monitoring agency to measure progress against goals. While anecdotal evidence suggests that the pilot program is showing success, a full accounting of our impact of this ongoing program based on health outcomes and data over a longer length of time is still forthcoming.

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