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The burden of anthropometric failure and child mortality in India
Authors: Junaid Khan and Sumit Kumar Das
Source: Scientific Reports, DOI: 10.1038/s41598-020-76884-8
Topic(s): Child feeding
Child height
Childhood mortality
Infant mortality
Water supply
Water treatment
Wealth Index
Country: Asia
Published: DEC 2020
Abstract: The public health burden of nutritional deficiency and child mortality is the major challenge India is facing upfront. In this context, using National Family Health Survey, 2015-16 data, this study estimated rate of composite index of anthropometric failure (CIAF) among Indian children by their population characteristics, across states and examined the multilevel contextual determinants. We further investigated district level burden of infant and child mortality in terms of multiple anthropometric failure prevalence across India. The multilevel analysis confirms a significant state, district and PSU level variation in the prevalence of anthropometric failures. Factors like- place of residence, household's economic wellbeing, mother's educational attainment, age, immunization status and drinking water significantly determine the different forms of multiple anthropometric failures. Wealth status of the household and mother's educational status show a clear gradient in terms of the estimated odds ratios. The district level estimation of infant and child mortality demonstrates that districts with higher burden of multiple anthropometric failures show elevated risk of infant and child mortality. Unlike previous studies, this study does not use the conventional indices, instead considered the CIAF to identify the exact and severe form of undernutrition among Indian children and the associated nexus with infant and child mortality at the district level.