Inequalities in Child Survival in Eight Northeastern States of India
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The impact of socioeconomic inequality adversely affects children and as a consequence high proportion of infant and child deaths happen in childhood. Maternal deprivation and malnutrition immediately affect the health status of mother and subsequently that of the newborn, which may be borne by the children throughout their entire life span. The inequalities within different social groups create deprivation on various socioeconomic aspects in their lives. It is a fact that infants belonging to disadvantaged group are certainly at higher risk of mortality than those born in advantaged group. The present research focuses on how do these disparities differ from one northeastern state to another northeastern state of India. To measure inequality and disparity within different northeastern states of India, this study utilizes standard tools like concentration curve and indices which are constructed utilizing the National Family Health Survey (NFHS-3) data. The infant and under-five mortality data from this source are categorized under different quintiles of wealth index to observe the discrepancies in child mortality among different social groups. Following the findings, we can classify the northeastern states into different groups based on the level of inequality in infant and under-five mortality in those states. Highest inequality is observed in the states of Tripura, Manipur, and Meghalaya. On the other hand, Sikkim and Arunachal Pradesh experience minimum level of inequality in child mortality among different socioeconomic groups. The states like Mizoram, Nagaland, and Assam are in between the above two extreme categories of states.
KeywordsInequality Concentration index Northeastern states Infant mortality Under-five mortality
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