India's population is stabilizing, indicates NFHS-5 phase 1 finding2 min read . Updated: 14 Dec 2020, 10:05 PM IST
- 17 states have witnessed an increase in the use of modern contraceptives of family planning
- The present NFHS is being conducted on 6.1 lakh sample households, involving household level interviews
The Total Fertility Rate (TFR) across majority of the states has decreased, showed findings of the first phase of the fifth National Family Health Survey (NFHS-5) released by Union health ministry. The result indicates that India's population may be stabilising.
The results of 17 States and 5 UTs (Assam, Bihar, Manipur, Meghalaya, Sikkim, Tripura, Andhra Pradesh, Andaman and Nicobar Islands, Gujarat, Himachal Pradesh, Jammu & Kashmir, Ladakh, Karnataka, Goa, Maharashtra, Telangana, West Bengal, Mizoram, Kerala, Lakshadweep, Dadra Nagar Haveli and Daman & Diu) were released by Union Health Minister Harsh Vardhan in Phase-I.
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"Of the 17 states analysed in the NFHS-5 data, except for Bihar, Manipur and Meghalaya, all other states have a TFR of 2.1 or less, which implies that most states have attained replacement level fertility," said Poonam Muttreja, executive director at Population Foundation of India (PFI), a public health, policy and development strategies firm.
According to the survey findings, all 17 states have witnessed an increase in the use of modern contraceptives of family planning. The proportion of women with unmet need for family planning who want to stop or delay childbearing but are not using any method of contraception has declined in all states, except Meghalaya and Andhra Pradesh.
Except for Manipur, all states have reported an increase in users getting information on side effects of current contraceptive methods. There is greater use of hygienic methods of protection during the menstrual period by women in a number of states, the survey indicates.
“The progress made on several health, fertility and women’s empowerment related indicators in NFHS 5 is heartening. However, what merits serious concern is that this data was recorded before the pandemic wreaked further havoc on our health and lives. We recognise that all governments, at the Centre and in the states as well as citizens, and civil society organisations are far more attentive to health-related issues in the wake of the pandemic that is still raging," said Muttreja.
“There have been some improvements in women’s empowerment related indicators. More women are able to participate in household decision making in 9 states while 30% more women now have bank accounts in Assam, Bihar, Gujarat and West Bengal," said Muttreja.
The ministry of health and family welfare in 2018 launched Mission Parivar Vikas for substantially increasing access to contraceptives and family planning services in 146 high fertility districts with Total Fertility Rate (TFR) of 3 and above in seven high focus states. TFR is the number of children who would be born per woman (or per 1,000 women) if she/they were to pass through the childbearing years bearing children according to a current schedule of age-specific fertility rates.
These districts are from the states of Uttar Pradesh, Bihar, Rajasthan, Madhya Pradesh, Chhattisgarh, Jharkhand and Assam that itself constitutes 44% of the country’s population. The government also added new contraceptives viz. Injectable contraceptive and Centchroman have been added to the existing basket of choices. A new method of IUCD insertion immediately after delivery i.e. post-partum IUCD (PPIUCD) was also introduced.
The present NFHS is being conducted on 6.1 lakh sample households, involving household level interviews to collect information on population, health, family planning and nutrition-related indicators.