The Grey Chronicles


Relative Hardship in Iligan? Part VI

This is the sixth part of my previous post on a quest of a suitable figure for Iligan City’s Relative Hardship for 2005. After writing about non-personable conditions in India and the Philippines, this post will tackle health conditions. It is often said that Health is Wealth, without Health no human activity is possible. Previous posts discussed a comparison of economic, political, public service, climatic, religious and safety conditions in India and the Philippines.

The Human Development Index [HDI] is a composite index measuring average achievement in three basic dimensions of human development—a long and healthy life, knowledge and a decent standard of living (UNDP, HDR2007).

Human Development Index

Human Development Index

Health conditions include health standards and risk of viral outbreaks.

World Resources Institute [WRI] (2008), estimates in 2005 survey, India’s Life Expectancy at Birth 65 years; while the Philippine Life Expectancy at Birth is 72.0 years. Life expectancy, according to World Bank World Development Report (2005), moreover, for Indian males 63, females 64; while Philippine males: 68 and females: 72. In 2002, the World Health Organization [WHO] (2007) estimated the Healthy Life Expectancy (HALE) at birth in years for India: 53 for males and 54 for females; for the Philippines: 57 for males and 62 for females.

Total Health Expenditures

Total Health Expenditures

Interestingly, India spends 485 Purchasing Price Parity [PPP$], while Philippines’ expenditure for health per capita is only 175, compared to 5,853 in the U.S. The WRI (2005) reports 2001’s health care expenditures per capita for India: $80; the Philippines: $169. WHO (2008) estimates in 2005 of per capita total expenditure on health PPP international dollar: India 100; Philippines 199.

According to a supplement to the World Development Indicators (2008) Purchasing Power Parity [PPP] conversion factor, GDP, for 2005 in local currency unit [LCU] to international dollars, India’s PPP$ 14.67; and Philippines’ PPP$ 21.75.

In 1995-2003 survey, World Resources Institute (2005) reports: 51 physicians per 100,000 people in India; 116 physicians per 100,000 people in the Philippines. Similarly, the World Health Organization (2007) reports that physicians’ density per 1000 population in India: 0.60 in 2004; while 0.58 in the Philippines in 2000. In 2002, there are 7 hospital beds for 10,000 population in India; while 12 hospital beds per 10,000 population in the Philippines.

Jha (2008) laments:

“The trend in the health sector is hardly encouraging. Funding for health services remains meagre, hovering around 1% of total GDP. Worse yet, the public health care system is collapsing around the millions of citizens who depend on it. More and more are flocking to private health services -58% of the rural population and 62% in urban areas by 2004.”

Feria (1999) observes the same in the Philippines, and adds:

“The Philippines exports many doctors, nurses and caregivers yearly, yet many women and children in rural areas die without seeing a doctor. The average hospital bill is three times the average monthly income in 1999 despite the Generics Act of 1988, which intended to provide safe and effective but affordable drugs to low-income households. Prices of drugs and pharmaceutical products are the highest in Asia, 250% to 1,600% higher than in neighbouring Indonesia, Malaysia, India, Bangladesh and Sri Lanka ”

WHO (2008) finds that: “Higher health expenditure is associated with better health outcomes, but sensitive to policy choices and context . . . Every $100 per capita spent on heath corresponds to a 1.1-year gain in HALE [Healthy Life Expectancy].”

Previous World Health Report (2002) observes that the leading health risk factors in terms of the burden of disease they cause are: underweight, unsafe sex, high blood pressure, tobacco consumption, alcohol consumption, unsafe water, sanitation and hygiene, iron deficiency, indoor smoke from solid fuels, high cholesterol and obesity. Collectively, these health risks account for more than one-third of all deaths worldwide.

Moreover, according to WHO (2004), based on 2002 data, death rates (per 100,000 people) for India: 401.9 due to communicable and 486.9 for non-communicable diseases; for the Philippines: 200.2 due to communicable and 322.0 for non-communicable. The top five infectious diseases leading to death for India, are: Diarrhoeal, Tuberculosis, HIV/AIDS, Childhood-cluster diseases (Pertussis, Poliomyelitis, Diphtheria, Measles, Tetanus) and Meningitis. For the Philippines, the top five are: Tuberculosis, Diarrhoeal, Childhood-cluster diseases, Dengue and Meningitis.

In 2005, India’s estimated number of adults and children living with HIV/AIDS was at 5.70 per million of people; while Philippines’ case was at 0.012 per million. Human Rights Watch [HRW] (2004), however, declares: “All of India’s states have reported AIDS cases . . . India’s HIV/AIDS policy has sorely neglected children.” In the World Health Statistics 2008, there was no published data for India.

The WHO Statistics (2007) report that prevalent tobacco use among adults aged 15 years and above, 42% males, 8.5% females India (2003); 58.6% males, 12.3% females Philippines (2004). By 2005, WHO Statistics (2008) revealed that prevalent tobacco use among adults aged 15 years and above, decreased substantially, such as 33.1% males, 3.8% females for India; 42.0% males, 9.8% females for the Philippines. Interestingly, WHO Statistics (2007) highlight the fact that in 2004, there were 17.5% among adolescents in India and 15.9% among adolescents in Philippines who smoked.

Furthermore, WHO Statistics (2007) also reveals that adults aged 15 years and above in 2003, per capita alcohol consumption (liters of pure alcohol) 3.51 for the Philippines; 0.29 in India.

The WRI (2005) also reports:

“In 2000, India emitted 1,008.0 million metric tons of Carbon Dioxide (CO2), a 63.7% increase ten years ago, amounting to 1.0 metric ton per person [a 36.3% increase from 1990]. Total Greenhouse Gases [GHG] Emissions, 1,837 million metric tons CO2 equivalent, while it ratified Kyoto Protocol in 2002. Philippines, on the other hand, emitted 75.3 million metric tons of CO2, a 77.5% ten years ago, or 1.0 metric ton per capita [a 43.4% increase from 1990]. Total GHG Emissions was at 133 million metric tons, and signed Kyoto Protocol in 2003.”

In 2003 per WHO Statistics (2007), per cent of urban population using solid fuel: 22% in India; 27% in the Philippines. Warwick & Doig (2003) emphasized that “Indoor air pollution is linked to over 1.6 million deaths a year, 500,000 of them in India alone. More than half of those who die of respiratory infections related to indoor air pollution are children under the age of five.”

WHO reports that for adults aged 15 years and above in 1998, 0.3% males and 0.6% females are obese in the India; 3.0% males and 6.2% females in the Philippines (WHO Statistics, 2007).


Feria, Monica (1999). Fighting the high cost of health. Philippine Graphic, 27 September 1999. back to text

HRW (2004). Future Forsaken: Abuses Against Children Affected by HIV/AIDS in India. Place: Human Rights Watch, 2004. p. 7. back to text

Jha, Himanshu (2008) India: Rights, commitments and delivery: who gets what, when and how? Social Watch 2008, Montevideo, Uruguay: Instituto del Tercer Mundo, 2008. pp. 132-3. back to text

UNDP HDR (2007). Human Development Report 2007/2008. New York: United Nations Development Programme (UNDP), 2007. pp. 230—231, 355-6. back to text

Warwick, H., and A. Doig. (2003). Smoke: the Killer in the Kitchen. Rugby, United Kingdom: ITDG. 2003:2. back to text

WB WDR2006 (2005) . World Development Report 2006: Equity and Development Washington, D.C.: The World Bank and Oxford University Press., 2005. p. 292-3. back to text

WB WDIS (2008). Poverty data: A supplement to World Development indicators 2008 Washington: The World Bank. December 2008. back to text

WHO BOD (2004). 2002 Burden of Disease. Geneva: World Health Organization (WHO), December 2004. back to text

WHO WHR (2002). The World Health Report 2002 – Reducing Risks, Promoting Healthy Life. Geneva: World Health Organization, 2002. back to text

WHO WHR (2008). World Health Report 2008: Primary Health Care; No More Than Ever. Geneva: World Health Organization (WHO), September 2008. p. 6-7. back to text

WHO WHS (2007). World Health Statistics 2007. Geneva: World Health Organization (WHO), May 2007. back to text

WHO WHS (2008). World Health Statistics 2008. Geneva: World Health Organization (WHO), June 2008. pp. 72—73. back to text

World Resources Institute [WRI] (2005) in collaboration with United Nations Development Programme, United Nations Environment Programme, and World Bank. World Resources 2005: The Wealth of the Poor—Managing Ecosystems to Fight Poverty. Washington, DC: World Resources Institute, 2005. back to text

World Resources Institute (2008) in collaboration with United Nations Development Programme, United Nations Environment Programme, and World Bank. World Resources 2008: Roots of Resilience—Growing the Wealth of the Poor. Washington, DC: World Resources Institute, 2008. p. 206. back to text

Disclaimer : The posts on this site does not necessarily represent any organization’s positions, strategies or opinions; and unless otherwise expressly stated, are licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution-Noncommercial-No Derivative Works 3.0 Philippines License.


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