82 percent state children are anaemic : Survey
Published in The Pioneer, Bhopal Edition December 24, 2006
Girish Sharma Bhopal
82 per cent State children are anaemic: SurveyAbout 82.6 per cent children in age group of 6 to 35 months are anaemic and 60 per cent children under three years of age are malnourished in Madhya Pradesh. This is the finding of latest 2005-2006 National Family Health Survey (NFHS-III) released recently by the Union Government.
This is the third in the NFHS series of surveys and provides information on population, health and nutrition in India and each of the State. This survey is based on a sample of households, which is representative at the national and State levels. In the same category, 75.2 per cent anaemic children are in urban areas while 84.9 per cent in rural areas. As compared to earlier figures, there has been a dramatic increase in anaemia in children in the State. As per NFHS II, only 71.3 per cent children were anaemic while data was not obtained in the NFHS I. In spite of various schemes being undertaken by the State, condition of children is going from bad to worse.
Similarly, in case of married women between 15 to 49 years, 57.6 per cent are anaemic, out of which 48.3 per cent are in urban and 61 per cent in rural areas. The State already has very high maternal mortality rate and anaemia is one of the major contributors to the same. This will have serious implications as far as the condition of women health is concerned. Anaemia is comparatively less in men. As per the data, only 24.4 per cent married men between the age group of 15-49 are anaemic.
The figures state that malnourishment among children has increased in Madhya Pradesh. As per the NFHS data, 60 per cent children under three years of age are malnourished in the State. They are underweight and too thin for their age.
Women and Child Development department has been claiming that it had brought down the malnourishment. But it has actually increased from 54 to 60 per cent when compared with NFHS II data. Madhya Pradesh is among the States with highest number of malnourished children.
The fact sheets provided by NFHS on key indicators and trends were based on the fieldwork conducted by 18 research organisations between December 2005 and August 2006.