Child Mortality Rate Higher For Boys Than Girls In J&K

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Srinagar: The infant and child mortality rates are higher for boys than girls in Jammu and Kashmir, even as the overall mortality rate among infants in the erstwhile state has witnessed a sharp decline over the last five years, the latest National Family Health Survey (NFHS) has revealed.

According to the NFHS-5, the infant mortality rate in Jammu & Kashmir is estimated at 16 deaths before the age of one year per 1,000 live births, down from the NFHS-4 estimate of 32, the NFHS-3 estimate of 45 and the NFHS-2 estimate of 65.

The under-five mortality rate (U5MR) is estimated to be 28 deaths before five years of age per 1,000 live births, almost the same as U5MR in NFHS-4 (29 per 1,000))

The report says that the mortality rates among children under age 5 years including neonatal, post neonatal and infant mortality rates is an important indicator that measures the overall well-being of country.

“In Jammu & Kashmir all infant and child mortality rates are higher for boys than girls. Having children too close together is also a risk. Children born less than four years after a previous birth are more likely to die in infancy as children whose mothers waited for at least four years between births,” the report says.

The report further reads that the children born to mothers age 30-39 are more likely to die during infancy than children born to mothers in the prime childbearing age (20-29 years).

“Infant mortality rates are also higher for Muslims than Hindus and are highest for scheduled tribes than any other social group,” says the report.

It further adds that the infant mortality rate is relatively higher in rural areas, among infants whose mothers have no schooling or less years schooling, and having higher birth order.

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Zaid Bin Shabir

Zaid Bin Shabir is a special correspondent at Kashmir Observer. He tweets @Zaidbinshabir

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