LTCcovid Country Profile – Printable Version

1.00. Brief overview of the Long-Term Care system

There is no formal or organized public LTC system in India, however a number of schemes cover some aspects of care for older people or people with disabilities and mental health conditions. Families (particularly women) are the main source of care, as well as untrained care workers such as “home attenders”. It is common to live in multigenerational households which providers opportunities for the rotation of carers and sharing of tasks, however, there are growing number of nuclear families, suggesting that this model of care will become less important over time (Rajagopalan et al., 2020).

There are some formal care services available, mostly provided by private and not-for-profit organisations, these include residential care, day care centres, geriatric care in some government and private hospitals and services by non-governmental organisations (Ponnuswami et al., 2017).

There are several policies and public programmes that aim to promote the welfare of older people and people with disabilities providing the legal framework. Social Welfare is implemented by the States, which means that there are important variations in the implementation of measures to support older and disabled people (UNESCAP, 2016).


Ponnuswami I. and Rajasekaran R. (2017) Long-term care of older persons in India: Learning to deal with the challenges. International Journal on Ageing in Developing Countries, 2(1):59-71.

Rajagopalan. J., Huzruk. S., Arshad. F., Raja.P., Alladi. S. (2020). The COVID-19 Long-Term Care situation in India. LTCcovid, International Long-Term Care Policy Network, CPEC-LSE, 30th May 2020.

UNESCAP (2016) Long-Term for Older Persons in India. SDD-SPPS Project Working Papers Series: Long-Term Care for older persons in Asia and the Pacific.

Update for: India   Last updated: February 16th, 2022

1.03. Long-term care financing arrangements and coverage

Public funding for LTC is very limited, but there are a few public benefit schemes such as disability benefits and pension schemes that offer modest support. Most formal LTC is paid for through out of pocket payments (source:

Update for: India   Last updated: August 2nd, 2021

2.07. Impacts of the pandemic on unpaid carers

Unpaid carers worried about protecting their relatives with dementia, keeping the occupied inside the house and adhering to hygiene measures. Unpaid carers found working and caring challenging and expressed concerns about financial implications. Formal and informal networks were less well accessible and there was difficulty in accessing medical care (Vaitheswaran et al., 2020).


Vaitheswaran, S., Lakshminarayanan, M., Ramanujam, V., Sargunan, S., & Venkatesan, S. (2020). Experiences and Needs of Caregivers of Persons With Dementia in India During the COVID-19 Pandemic-A Qualitative Study. The American journal of geriatric psychiatry : official journal of the American Association for Geriatric Psychiatry, 28(11), 1185–1194.

Update for: India   Last updated: January 6th, 2022

3.11. Vaccination policies for people using and providing Long-Term Care

India’s vaccination programme for those 60 and older, and those deemed 45+ and high risk, began on March 1st, 2021. This coincided with the opening of a partially private market (e.g. vaccination out of pocket): approximately 10,000 government centres nationwide are offering free vaccinations, and 20,000 private hospitals charge the state-fixed rate of 250 rupees ($4.57). Over 12 million health, long term, and frontline workers have already been vaccinated through the state-funded program


Update for: India   Last updated: September 7th, 2021

3.12. Measures to support unpaid carers

Organisations in India provide COVID-19 information for people with disabilities/LTC needs and their family carers. One organisation has developed an app to enable family carers to access expert advice. The Ministry of Health and Family Welfare provided online medication, yoga videos, advice on mental health support and a psychosocial behavioural helpline. Some states have set up dedicated services (helplines) and organisations have implemented virtual interventions. Guidelines by the Ministry of Social Justice and Empowerment state that family carers should be issued with travel passes (

Update for: India   Last updated: September 7th, 2021