Decline, Maternal Mortality Ratio, India, National Health Policy Target, MMR

Decline in Maternal Mortality Ratio: India achieves National Health Policy Target for MMR

India has achieved a new milestone in healthcare. There has been a marked decline in the Maternal Mortality Ratio (MMR). As per the information on MMR released by the Registrar General of India (RGI), the Maternal Mortality Ratio of India has improved further by a spectacular 6 points and now stands at 97/ lakh live births.

Congratulating the country on this accomplishment, Dr. Mansukh Mandaviya, Union Minister of Health and Family Welfare praised the incredible progress in effectively lowering the Maternal Mortality Ratio and said in a tweet:

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.

Quoting the tweet by the Union Minister, Prime Minister Narendra Modi tweeted:

“A very encouraging trend. Happy to see this change. Our emphasis on furthering all aspects relating to women empowerment remains very strong.”

As per the statistics derived from Sample Registration System (SRS), India 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 97 in 2018-20.

With this, the country has achieved the National Health Policy (NHP) mark for MMR of less than 100/lakh live births. India is on the right track to achieving the Sustainable Development Goal (SDG) target of MMR of less than 70/ lakh live births by 2030.

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Kerala (19), followed by Maharashtra (33), Telangana (43), Andhra Pradesh (45), Tamil Nadu (54), Jharkhand (56), Gujarat (57), and lastly Karnataka (69) made outstanding progress in terms of the number of states which have reached the SDG target.

Since 2014, under the National Health Mission (NHM), India has made a concerted endeavor to provide accessible quality maternal and newborn health services and minimize preventable maternal casualties. The NHM has made substantial investments to make sure the healthcare services, particularly for the effective implementation of maternal health programs, are provided to accomplish the specified MMR targets.

Government projects such as “Janani Suraksha Yojana” and “Janani Shishu Suraksha Karyakram” have been modified and upgraded. Pradhan Mantri Surakshit Matritva Abhiyan (PMSMA) is particularly praised for its focus on identifying high-risk pregnancies and facilitating their proper management. This had a powerful impact on mitigating preventable mortality, said the Government of India (GOI).

LaQshya and Midwifery initiatives focus on promoting quality care in a respectful and dignified manner ensuring the choice of birthing for all pregnant women, the government added.

What is the Maternal Mortality Ratio?

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

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Journalist Anurag Sason

About the author: Anurag Sason is an Indian journalist with experience in mainstream journalism. He has worked in newspaper, news agency, TV, news app (short video sharing app) and digital media. He tweets at @AnuragSason

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