Role of Private Sector in Providing Tuberculosis Care: Evidence from a Population-based Survey in India

J Glob Infect Dis. 2011 Jan;3(1):19-24. doi: 10.4103/0974-777X.77291.


Background: In India, a large segment of the population seeks health care services from individual or institutional private health-care providers for health care. We analyzed a nationally representative data to identify the role of private providers in delivering health care for patients with tuberculosis.

Materials and methods: The primary data source for the present analysis was the 60(th) round of the National Sample Survey. Distribution frequencies were used to analyze the distribution of key sociodemographic variables and multiple logistic regression was used to analyze the association between these variables and healthcare seeking behavior.

Results: A sample of 2203 respondents who had received ambulatory care for tuberculosis, and 4568 respondents who had received inpatient treatment were analyzed. About half of the respondents had attended private facilities for TB care. Sociodemographic variables such as paediatric age group, females, higher level of education, and economic groups were associated with attendance at private sector. Dissatisfaction with services in government facilities was cited as the main reason for preferring private facilities.

Conclusions: Private providers play an important role in providing health care services to a large proportion of patients with tuberculosis. There is a need for innovative measures to increase participation of the private sector in the national TB control program and to improve the quality of services in government facilities.

Keywords: NSS; Private providers; Reasons; Source of treatment; Tuberculosis.