Journal of Dr. NTR University of Health Sciences (Jan 2021)
Infant mortality in Empowered Action Group states in India: An analysis of sociodemographic factors
Introduction: Infant mortality rate (IMR) is considered one of the key indicators of the social and economical development of a country. Therefore, some sociodemographic indicators were evaluated from eight poorly performing states of India. Materials and Methods: Data from National Family Health Survey 4 (2015-16) were analyzed, using Pearson Correlation Coefficient. Female literacy, provision for improved drinking water and sanitation, use of clean fuel for cooking, measles vaccination, the occurrence of diarrhea, and exclusive breastfeeding were taken into account. Rural and urban parts were considered separately. Results: Lower IMR was noted in urban areas in Empowered Action Group (EAG) states. Urban Odisha recorded better IMR than other units (21/1000 live births). Female literacy (r = −0.558) and improved sanitation (r = −0.555) were significantly related to IMR. In comparison to National Family Health Survey 3 (2005-06), appreciable reduction was noted in IMR in urban Rajasthan (53%) and urban Odisha (48%). Conclusion: Literacy and improved sanitation are important factors associated with infant mortality in EAG states. Strategies targeting social development could spell wonder in the future, in terms of reducing IMR in these states.