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India misses key health targets, but shows improvement

Press Trust of India  |  New Delhi 

India is lagging considerably behind its key human development index targets, including population control, infant mortality rate (IMR) and maternal mortality rate (MFR), according to figures given by Health Minister Harsh Vardhan in Lok Sabha today.

The goals set by the government for IMR and MMR for 2010 were 30 per 1000 live births and 100 per 1 lakh live births repectively but it could achieve numbers of 42 and 178 only by 2012, falling way behind.

The total fertility rate (TFR) in 2012 was 2.4 while the target was 2.1 for 2010, Vardhan said. A TFR of 2.1 per woman is expected to make the population growth zero.

Though 23 states and UTs, including all four southern states, have already achieved replacement level fertility of 2.1 or less, the most populous state of UP and Bihar have TFR of 3.3 and 3.5 respectively, he said.

Jharkhand, Chhattisgarh, Arunachal Pradesh, Gujarat, Assam, Haryana, Madhya Pradesh and Rajasthan have TFR between 2.2 and 3.

TFR is, however, showing a decline nationally as it was 2.6 in 2008 and 2.5 in 2010.

India has also shown improvement on IMR and MMR indicators as they were 53 and 212 in 2008 and 2007-09 respectively, according to official figures.

Vardhan said the country may reach its Millennium Development Goals, set up by the United Nations, of reaching under-five mortality rate of 42 in 2015 if the current trend of annual decline persists. The rate was 126 in 1990.

The MDG target for maternal mortality rate is 140 in 2015 and India is likely to reach 141 with its current rate.

First Published: Fri, July 18 2014. 16:27 IST