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New Delhi: India has achieved the National Health Policy (NHP) target for the maternal mortality ratio, said the Ministry of Health and Family Welfare in a press release on Wednesday.

According to the special bulletin released by the Registrar General of India (RGI), the Maternal Mortality Rate (MMR) has decreased from 130 per lakh live births in 2014-16 to 97 per lakh live births in 2018-20. The country is on track to achieve the target of MMR less than 70 per lakh live births by 2030.

Health minister Mansukh Mandaviya tweeted, “Significant Decline in the Maternal Mortality Ratio from 130 in 2014-16 to 97 per lakh live births in 2018-20. The various healthcare initiatives of PM @NarendraModi Ji’s Govt to ensure quality maternal and reproductive care helped tremendously in bringing down MMR."

The Maternal Mortality Ratio (MMR) is defined as the number of maternal deaths during a given time period per 100,000 live births.

As per the statistics derived from Sample Registration System (SRS), the country has witnessed a progressive reduction in MMR from 130 in 2014-2016, 122 in 2015-17, 113 in 2016-18, 103 in 2017-19 and to 97 in 2018-20, respectively.

“Upon achieving this, India has accomplished the National Health Policy (NHP) target for MMR of less than 100/lakh live births and is on the right track to achieve the SDG target of MMR less than 70/ lakh live births by 2030," the union health ministry added.

States have made significant progress in terms of achieving the Sustainable Development Goal (SDG) target. “The number has risen from six to eight leading with Kerala (19), followed by Maharashtra (33), then Telangana (43) and Andhra Pradesh (45), subsequently Tamil Nadu (54), Jharkhand (56), Gujarat (57) and lastly Karnataka (69)," the health ministry said.

India has made concerted effort to provide accessible quality maternal and newborn health services and minimize preventable maternal deaths under the National Health Mission (NHM).

NHM has made significant investments to ensure provision of healthcare services, particularly for effective implementation of the maternal health programs to accomplish the specified MMR targets.

Government schemes such as “Janani Shishu Suraksha Karyakram" and “Janani Suraksha Yojana" have been modified and upgraded to more assured and respectful service delivery initiatives like Surakshit Matritva Aashwasan’ (SUMAN).

ABOUT THE AUTHOR

Swati Luthra

Swati Luthra writes on climate change, water, environment and forest issues for Mint. A graduate in Psychology, Swati has been mapping India’s policy initiatives to help meet the pledges made at CoP-26 including achieving net-zero carbon emissions by 2070.
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