According to recently released first phase of National Family Health Survey (NFHS) 4, the sex ratio in many states in India has significantly decreased and literacy rate has increased.
The first phase of survey was undertaken by Mumbai based International Institute for Population Sciences under the aegis of the Union Ministry of Health and Family Welfare.
NFHS-4 is the first survey in the NFHS series that has collected data from all 29 States and all 7 Union Territories. It will also provide estimates at the district level of most indicators for all 640 districts in the country.
Highlights of the report
- 11 states and 2 UTs surveyed: In the first phase surveyed states/UTs are Goa, Uttarakhand, Meghalaya, Tamil Nadu, Tripura, Madhya Pradesh, Sikkim, Haryana, Karnataka, Bihar, West Bengal, Andaman and Nicobar Islands (UT), Puducherry (UT).
- Female literacy: Women’s literacy has gone up in each of surveyed states and collectively has increased by 12.15% in these 11 states.
- Sex ratio: It has significantly decreased in 9 out of 11 surveyed states of India. On an average, there are 985 females per 1,000 males in 2015-16.
- Uttarakhand (1,015 females per 1,000 males) and Meghalaya (1,005 females per 1,000 males) are having higher sex ratio and remaining states saw a disturbing fall in sex ratio.
- Institutional deliveries: Children delivered in a medical institution under medical supervision has increased by 32.8%. Madhya Pradesh (54.6%), Karnataka (44.8%) and Bihar (43.9%) saw a huge rise in institutional deliveries.
- Child marriages: It has reduced by 13.17% for females and 6.7% for males in these 11 survey states.
- Health concern and Nutrition: Overall health status of Indians has improved and poor nutrition is less common compared to previous survey. Anaemia cases also have declined, but still remain widespread.
- Drinking water, sanitation & cooking fuel: Indian families are now more inclined to use improved drinking water and sanitation facilities. More than 50% of households have access to improved sanitation facilities except Bihar and Madhya Pradesh.
The NFHS-4 is the fourth in a series of national surveys after 2005-06 (NFHS-3), 1998-99 (NFHS-2) and 1992-93 (NFHS-1).