Telangana trails in health spending, reveals CAG report

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Telangana consistently lags behind in health sector expenditure, accounting for only 4% of the total expenditure, as per the state finances audit report released by the Comptroller and Auditor General (CAG) of India for the fiscal ending March 2022. While the average allocation for health in general states during 2017-18 was 5.09%, Telangana allocated only 4.59%. The disparity continued in 2021-22, with general states allocating 6.2% for health and Telangana a mere 4.19%.

The report highlights a capital expenditure contrast between 2020-21 and 2021-22 for medical and public health, revealing an increase from ₹259 crore to ₹498 crore with a yearly variation of ₹239 crore. Notably, the Health and Family Welfare department received a major loan disbursement of ₹360 crore, with ongoing loans to Aarogyasri Health Care Trust (AHCT), lacking a definite revenue stream for repayment. The report discloses that loans totaling ₹2,866 crore were extended to AHCT and Telangana Vaidya Vidhana Parishad from 2017-18 to 2022.

Comparing revenue expenditure on health, the report indicates a stark contrast between general states (19.71%) and Telangana (11.75%) for 2020-21 to 2021-22. The total grant for medical and health amounted to ₹381.63 crore, but the expenditure surpassed this at ₹509.19 crore, resulting in excess expenditure of ₹127.56 crore. Additionally, the report raises concerns about unreconciled receipts totaling ₹407 crore in the Medical and Public Health department.

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