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SWASTH

is a not-for-profit social enterprise aimed at redressing health inequity among India’s urban population by extending affordable, safe and accountable healthcare to low-income areas. GMSP partnered with Swasth to set up and operate a health centre within an urban slum in Mumbai and supports Swasth with its capacity building. 

patients seen

850,000

of Swasth’s workforce 

is women 

70%

24

clinics in Mumbai and 4 clinics in Ahmedabad 

CHALLENGE

Safe drinking water and adequate sanitation are essential to good health. But for India’s urban poorest, a lack of both these can leave communities very vulnerable, with a high prevalence of water-borne and insect-borne diseases in the more crowded spaces. Poverty and lack of access to good healthcare have also led to many nutritional deficiencies among adults and children alike. 

Many conditions are preventable, some are treatable. However, people have to choose between an under-resourced government health service, and private healthcare that can be dangerously unregulated or too expensive. 

The economic consequences of illness, particularly unpredictable illnesses or “health shocks”, can have a devastating impact on families that pay out-of-pocket. For so many, it only takes one unexpected medical bill to push them into poverty and debt. Annually, 60 million Indians go below the poverty line due to a health shock. 

ACTION

Swasth Foundation runs a network of medical centres that provide services in family medicine and dentistry, thanks to a low-cost drug supply chain, in-house pathology labs and the training of staff hired from the community. 

 

Electronic technology is used keep patient records. To maintain transparency and quality control, doctors are assessed based on feedback by patients on the quality of their service. 

 

Swasth is also working to develop a wellness programme that synergises the knowledge of the West with the wisdom of the East and provides coaching, counselling, diet and nutrition advice to prevent the onset of chronic illness and enhance quality of life.