New Delhi: Anemia among children and women continues to be a cause of concern. More than half of them, including pregnant women, are anemic nationwide.
The National Family Health Survey (NFHS-5) here on Wednesday underlined that in spite of the substantial increase in the composition of iron folic acid (IFA) tablets by pregnant women for 180 days or more, over half of them and the children are anemic.
In the key indicators of the survey, exclusive breastfeeding to children under age six months has shown an improvement in all-India level from 55 per cent in 2015-16 to 64 per cent in 2019-21.
The child nutrition indicators have also shown a slight improvement at the all-India level as stunting has declined from 38 per cent to 36 per cent and underweight from 36 per cent to 32 per cent at the all-India level. In all phase-II States/UTs, the situation has improved in respect of child nutrition, but the change is not significant as drastic changes in respect of these indicators are unlikely in a short span period.
The survey has found that the institutional births have increased substantially from 79 per cent to 89 per cent at the all-India Level. However, the institutional delivery is 100 per cent in Puducherry and Tamil Nadu and more than 90 per cent in 7 States/UTs out of 12 Phase II States/UTs. Along with an increase in institutional births, there has also been a substantial increase in C-section deliveries in many States/UTs especially in private health facilities.
On comparing the previous NFHS-4 and NFHS-5 data, the increase in full immunization coverage is observed to be expeditious in many states and UTs. Over 50 per cent of Phase-II States/ UTs are sharing over 10 percentage points during the short span of 4 years.
Dr. Vinod Kumar Paul, Member (Health), NITI Aayog and Rajesh Bhushan, Health Secretary, released the Factsheets of key indicators on population, reproductive and child health, family welfare, nutrition and others for India and 14 States/UTs clubbed under Phase-II of the 2019-21 National Family Health Survey (NFHS-5) here today.
The States and UTs which were surveyed in the Phase-II are Arunachal Pradesh, Chandigarh, Chhattisgarh, Haryana, Jharkhand, Madhya Pradesh, NCT of Delhi, Odisha, Puducherry, Punjab, Rajasthan, Tamil Nadu, Uttar Pradesh and Uttarakhand.