The healthy way to fix the economy -Arjun Jayadev & Achal Prabhala
* India must use this moment to redirect government energies towards truly improving public health for all
* India has the legal and industrial infrastructure to produce high-quality and affordable medicines, but we have hobbled it. The Indian patent system needs urgent attention
BENGALURU: As we enter the tenth week of lockdown, it is hard to get past debates on the effectiveness of India’s response to the coronavirus pandemic. The relatively low mortality from the coronavirus is a dubious success: Official statistics are notoriously off the mark, and we do not know what life and death will look like when the lockdown lifts.
The many failures of the response, however, are clear. We have failed to utilize the lockdown effectively by scaling-up testing; our rates remain among the lowest in the world. The heavy hand of bureaucracy is everywhere, given the confusing rules at each stage of our lockdown. Then this crisis has seen the scapegoating of Muslims—and trapped migrant workers are being driven to the edge of death as they make the long journey home in the heat of the Indian summer. Finally, in protecting the country from one urgent disease, we have abandoned everyone with practically every other disease.
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Livemint.com, 22 May, 2020, https://www.livemint.com/news/india/the-healthy-way-to-fix-the-economy-11590075276838.html