There has been a considerable improvement in India’s health indicators over the last decade with a decline in infant mortality, complimented by a better sex ratio, more institutional deliveries and wider vaccine coverage.
The recent data accumulated during the fourth phase of National Family Health Survey has stated that the population rate is also showing a positive change.
“The results show that if we invest and design good programmes in health, results will follow,” health secretary C K Mishra was quoted by Times of India in its report as saying.
The data shows that Haryana projected a commendable change in its sex ratio at birth. In 2005-06, 762 females were born per 1,000 males in the state. The ratio improved to 836 females per 1,000 males in the survey in 2014-15.
The ratio, however, improved marginally nationally with 919 females born against 1,000 males during the fourth phase of the survey. During 2005-06, 914 females were born per 1,000 males.
The survey further shows that India’s total fertility ratio declined to 2.2 from 2.7 over last decade, inching closer to the replacement level of 2.1. Overall, the level declined by 1.2 children per woman from NFHS 1 to NFHS 4. The data also shows that Uttar Pradesh showcased maximum decline in TFR, which dropped from 2.7 to 1.1 in last eight years.
Furthermore, there has been a significant decline in the infant mortality rate – from 57 per 1,000 live births in third phase to 41 in the fourth phase. The institutional deliveries witnessed a dramatic growth of 40 percentage points from 38.7 per cent in NFHS 3 to 78.9 per cent in NFHS 4.
India recorded a 10 percentage point decline in stunting from 48 per cent during the third phase of the survey to 38.4 per cent in the fourth round.