At a time when job losses are making headlines, the healthcare sector seems to hold out some employment promise, with 5,00,000 jobs being added every year.

And this graph is set to go upwards, fuelled by growth in smaller cities, says Joy Chakraborty, Chief Operating Officer with PD Hinduja Hospital. The employment growth is across the board — from doctors and nurses to para-medical and other support staff — said Chakraborty, who is also Chairman of the Confederation of Indian Industry (CII) western region sub-committee on healthcare. But there is also a challenge in terms of getting skilled people for the job, he told businessline.

Chakraborty pointed out that since 2016, the Indian healthcare sector has been growing at the rate of 22 per cent CAGR, and was pegged to touch $372 billion by the end 2022. Besides employment, pointing to beneficiaries, N Nawin Sona, Secretary, Public Health Department (Maharashtra), said there were almost 1,000 hospitals in the State that catered to around 2.2 crore beneficiaries.

“Under the Mahatma Jyotiba Phule Jan Arogya Yojana, there are around 83 lakh people who are covered for all ailments with an insurance cover of ₹1.5 lakh per person/year. Other than that, there is a Central scheme, the Prime Minister Jan Arogya Yojana (PMJAY), which gives health coverage of up to ₹5 lakh,” he said, adding that the government was working on a roadmap to increase the number of hospitals to benefit more people. He was speaking at the 5th edition of CII Hospital Tech Conclave 2022.

Referring to the Ayushman Bharat Health Account (ABHA), he said it would help people living even in remote places to get faster and affordable healthcare.

“Due to the 14-digit account number, a lot of patient data would be generated and saved. With his data records saved on cloud, he can get access to faster healthcare as a lot of time would be saved,” he said. Alan Gemmell, Trade Commissioner for South Asia and British Deputy High Commissioner for Western India, said that the UK and India would be doubling trade partnership by 2030. “The last time the UK Prime Minister Boris Johnson came to India, there was an increase of 2 billion pounds of trade and 18000 new jobs were created,” he pointed out.