Pillar 3
Health and Hygiene

Key Indicator : Physician density, Use of basic sanitation, Use of basic drinking water, Hospital beds, Accessibility of healthcare services, Communicable diseases incidence

Another essential requirement for the development of the T&T industry is health and hygiene. There need to be appropriate standards for cleanliness so as to prevent the spread of illness and disease, and in case of tourists fall ill, the health sector should have the ability to take good care of them.[77]

Pakistan ranks 89 and has a value of 3.7 according to T&T Development Report 2021 in this pillar. In 2021, Pakistan had one physician for 845 people and one hospital bed for 1,539 people.[78] Apart from the lack of facilities and services, there existed the risk of getting diseases from an unhygienic environment. The incidence rate for malaria was 2.5 (per 1000 people at risk), while the HIV prevalence among adults aged 15 to 24 was 0.13% in 2020.[79]

The government’s response to Covid-19 was hailed by WHO as one of the best responses in the world.

However, progress toward the provision of quality health services is being made. The government developed and began implementing a federal strategy to deal with the management of the health sector, including enhancing the quality of health services and easy access to them.[80] As a part of revolutionising social services, the previous government had aimed to increase health coverage (issued sehat sahulat cards with coverage of PKR 1 million)[81] and to provide secondary and tertiary health facilities, including expanding public healthcare capacity and initiating an incentive programme to attract more physicians to remote areas.[82] The government also looked to increase spending on public health as per WHO recommendations to introduce new interventions in the future.[83] In the 2019-20 budget, the government allocated around PKR 13 billion[84] for 13 current and 32 new schemes in the health sector.[85] This was increased to PKR 21.7 billion in 2021-22[86] for 40 new and ongoing schemes and is expected to increase to 73.9 billion for further expansion and upgradation of public health facilities.[87]


Although the government looks to improve the standard of health facilities and services nationwide, more focus is required on the provision of safe drinking water and basic sanitation services. In 2020, the population using at least basic drinking water services increased slightly to 90.1%, while the proportion of safely managed drinking water services remained the same at 35.8%.[88] The same year, while 68.4% population utilised at least basic sanitation services, there was no figure provided for the population using safely managed sanitation services.[89]

Nevertheless, the government’s response to Covid-19 was hailed by WHO as one of the best responses in the world.[90] In 2021, under the Covid-19 response, the federal budget allocated for the health sector was around PKR 4.5 billion. Moreover, the Government spent 25.738 billion rupees in 2021-22 on coronavirus-related activities.[91] While in 2022-23, the government has allocated 206.98 billion rupees of the budget for health services which cover primary, secondary, and tertiary health care as well as preventive interventions. This will enable provincial governments to strengthen their early warning, disease surveillance and response systems, and public health laboratory networks.[92]

There is still a need for significant spending and improvement in order to raise the standard of health and hygiene to the level with which tourists would feel comfortable and not discouraged to travel to, or within Pakistan.