Kerala tops health indices; Uttar Pradesh least performed

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Kerala once again tops the states in India on Health performance whereas Uttar Pradesh was the least performing state, according to the second Health Index published by Niti Aayog.

Kerala once again tops the states in India on Health performance whereas Uttar Pradesh was the least performing state, according to the second Health Index published by Niti Aayog.

Andhra Pradesh and Maharshtra come second and third in the index table. The report takes into account 2015-16 period as the base year to 2017-18. The Niti Aayog report also says that Rajashtan, Haryana and Jharkhand top the three positions with respect to incremental performance.

Though Kerala tops among the best performing states in the country, Niti Aayog says that the state has shown an overall decrease in the health index score. While Tamil Nadu dropped in the score from the third to the ninth position, Punjab went to the fifth position from the second, the report said.  It said that Kerala that had a score of 76.55 (2015-16) was down to 74.01 in 2018-19. Andhra Pradesh had bettered its position to the second place with 65.13 score (2018-19) than its earlier score of 60.16 (2015-16). Maharashtra also had a better score of 63.99 (2018-19) than its earlier score board of 61.07 (2015-16). Punjab which was in the second place in 2015-16 slipped down to the fifth position and Tamil Nadu that was in the third position went to the ninth position.

The report also points out that the Neonatal Mortality Rate was a serious concern in the country. It is said that two thirds of new born deaths occur during the neonatal period. With respect to Under 5 Mortality Rate, the report also says that India was far behind in achieving the index.

The decline in the overall health index of the worst performing states of Odisha, Bihar, Uttar Pradesh, Madhya Pradesh and Uttarakhand is related to many factors and varies from one state to another. When Bihar is concerned, it has been said that the deterioration was related to low birth weight, total fertility rate and time for NHM fund transfer.

While low birth weight, birth registration and treatment of TB cases are reasons for the low performance in Uttar Pradesh, the deterioration in Under 5 Mortality Rate, Neonatal Mortality Rate and NHM fund transfer are the factors that has given Uttarakhand a lower  health index.

SUSTAINABLE DEVELOPMENT GOALS

As far as Sustainable Development Goals is concerned, Kerala and Tamil Nadu have reached the 2030 goal with respect to Neonatal Mortality Rate. The SDG goal for 2030 is 12 deaths per 1000 births. The Niti Aayog says that Punjab and Maharasthra are inching closer to achieve the goal.  With respect to SDG related to Under 5 mortality rate, the report says that Kerala, Maharashtra and Punjab have already achieved it.

Among the smaller states, Niti Aayog says that Mizoram was placed in the first position in overall performance. In terms on incremental performance, Manipur and Tripura were on the top. With respect to health index of Union Territories, the report says that Chandigarh was on the top. While Dadar and Nagar Haveli and Chandigarh performed better in the health index among the union territories, Andaman and Nicobar Islands and Lakshwadeep were the worst performers.

Niti Aayog also points out that a few states with low economic development performed better, the strategies which could be adopted by other low income states.

The first report of Niti Aayog on health factors was released in February 2018. Niti Aayog has been bringing out the health index with an aim to transform the health performance of the country.

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