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CGD Policy Blogs

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How to Improve Healthcare and Save Money with Strategic Purchasing in India

In this blog, we explore three key actions linked to strategic purchasing that India’s AB-PMJAY scheme can apply by leveraging its influence as a major purchaser of services and goods in the country. These same actions are readily generalizable and can replicated by other jurisdictions to save money, improve health and accelerate a country’s journey towards UHC.

An image of an Indian woman wearing a mask.

Delivering Social Assistance during COVID with a “Digital-First” Approach: Lessons from India

As the COVID-19 pandemic started to exact a toll on lives and livelihoods in early 2020, countries imposed strict lockdowns to stem the spread of infections, disrupting economies and societies across the world. With pandemic-induced constraints on in-person interactions, many countries adopted a “digital first” approach to delivering social assistance, primarily cash transfers.

A man lies in a hospital bed with an oxygen mask over his face

Three New Estimates of Deaths in India during the Pandemic

The official Covid death count in India as of end-June 2021 is 400,000. The reality is, of course, catastrophically worse. Unlike in other countries, authoritative excess death estimates based on official data have not been available because government recording of deaths, especially at the center, has been lagging. In new research, we provide three different estimates of such excess deaths based on three different data sources, each requiring different assumptions and methodologies.

An image of a woman in India receiving the COVID vaccine.

Can SMS-based Information Campaigns Help Prevent the Spread of COVID-19 in India?

Preventive behaviors such as handwashing and social distancing are critical to containing the spread of infectious diseases like COVID-19, particularly in densely populated areas of low-income countries with crowded living quarters and public spaces. But it can be challenging to identify and deploy effective interventions to encourage widespread knowledge and adoption of these behaviors.

An image of a group of women in India wearing masks.

India Needs to Focus on Three Urgent Actions to Mitigate its COVID-19 Humanitarian Crisis

India’s second COVID-19 wave has been explosive, reaching world record totals of over 300,000 daily officially reported cases. The true number is likely to be much higher, with a large number of cases missed as indicated by the delays in testing and rapidly rising positivity rates - currently one in every four people tested are positive for COVID-19 across India. Leading models estimate that there could be over 1 million cases per day. The health service has collapsed, with queues of ambulances parked outside full hospitals, oxygen and drug shortages in multiple states, and life-saving non-COVID services interrupted.

Who Is Going Back to School? A Four-Country Rapid Survey in Ethiopia, India, Nigeria, and Pakistan

To understand the impact of the COVID-19 pandemic on re-enrollment for girls and boys, CGD and Malala Fund collaborated to analyze results from a series of rapid surveys that Malala Fund commissioned in Ethiopia, India, Nigeria, and Pakistan. These surveys are among the first (to our knowledge) to elicit children’s self-reported likelihood of going back to school and their experiences during the pandemic.

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