India beats Nigeria and Pakistan in infant deaths due to basic health services
Hundreds of Children died in the hospitals even in the home state of PM
|| Karamvir Kamal
Do children die by eating more litchi?
Do mere poor children die more?
But from where do poor children get money to eat expensive litchi?
Or the question does arise, why is August, the month of death for children?
Or why are the children dying in the hospitals of the state OF THE GUJARAT MODEL from where nation’s prime minister hailS ?
In Rajasthan, the death of innocent children goes on in hospitals. So, had not the previous BJP government worked on the health system in Rajasthan?
Whatever the answer to these questions or excuses, but the result is the death of the children due to the laxity of the concerned agencies as well as for government negligence.
We the people,may term that governments have become insensitive now.
As soon as the news of the unfortunate death of more than 100 children in Rajasthan’s Kota came into lime light, politics of blame game ignited. After UP and Bihar, news of the death of children in the hospital started coming from Rajasthan. Again the dirty politics started.
While the BJP blamed the Congress on this, the Congress also blamed the previous BJP government for this. The present government, forgetting its responsibility, was also found to justify the numbers of the death toll.
After reports of the death of children came from the Prime Minister’s home state of Gujarat, the opposition , Congress started blaming the Prime Minister and his thought of Gujarat Model . Ahmadabad’s Civil Hospital, which is known as Asia’s largest hospital from where this unfortunate news of children’s death came from . The Congress blamed the BJP for this. In the same hospital, 74 children died in November and 94 children in October.
In the last 3 months, as many as 253 children lost their lives in a civil hospital due to the laxity of our system and incapacity of our government. Apart from this, 134 children died in Rajkot. In both the states of Congress and BJP government blaming each other. Unfortunately, 500 children have died in the month of December itself. If the children come to the hospital for the sake of their lives but get death then a natural question does arise on the health system of the country.
By the way, there are many reasons for the death of children. Our health sector may have a low budget or lack of execution of government policy Or lack of a doctor.
But lack of responsibilities along with political will in governance is also a major cause of death of children as well as with other causes.
According to the report which was tabled by the United Nations Inter-agency Group for Child Mortality Estimation (UNIGME) is due to lack of access to water, sanitation, proper nutrition and basic health services that resulted in 802,000 infant deaths in India in the year 2017, despite the our government’s various ongoing programs on sanitation, health, and nutrition.
“Infant deaths were reported the highest in India among all the countries of the world, followed by Nigeria at 466,000, Pakistan at 330,000 and the Democratic Republic of Congo at 233,000 (DRC). India recorded 605,000 neonatal deaths in 2017, and the number of deaths among children aged 5-14 was recorded at 152,000,” revealed the report.
However, the numbers of infant deaths were lowest in five years for India and have come down from 867,000 in 2016 to 802,000 in 2017. In 2016, India’s infant mortality rate was 44 per 1,000 live births. In 2017, the sex-specific under-five mortality rate was 39 in 1,000 live births for males and 40 in 1,000 live births for females, the report added.
Last year, more than 125 children died in the same month due to brain fever in Muzaffar Pur in Bihar. The case of death of many children shaped into a political weapon of the blame game in the state of Uttar Pradesh in which hundreds of children died due to lack of Oxygen of Cylinder in a Government Hospital.
According to news reports from the region, an additional 300 patients – mostly children between 5 and 10 – were being treated in crowded and germ-infested hospitals in Muzaffarpur by few doctors with limited resources and medicines which was the real reason of Muzaffarpur’s tragedy.
In most of these hospitals, there was one bed for 4-5 children for treatment.
Pollution is also a big reason
Increased pollution has also been a major reason for the death of children. According to a report of Global Burden of Disease 2017, every 3 minutes a child dies due to air pollution.
According to a study, every year 1 lakh children below the age of 5 die from pollution.
Air pollution in India is responsible for 12.5 percent of all deaths in the country, according to the State of India’s Environment (SoE) report, 2019. 8.5 percent out of every 10,000 children in India die before they turn five due to poor air quality.
According to the think tanks of the Center for Science and Environment (CSE), the government scheme in fighting pollution has not been as successful as it was thought and planned. Global reports on air pollution show that 1.2 million people died only due to pollution in 2017.
In 2013, India had pledged to phase out non-electric vehicles and achieve a target of cumulative sales of 15-16 million hybrid and electric vehicles by 2020.
However, as per the CSE report, the number of e-vehicles till May 2019 was 0.28 million which is much behind the set goal.
While India was one of the first countries to pledge the phasing out of non-electric vehicles, its national scheme to promote the sale of e-vehicles is yet to pick up.
Findings of the report
Environment think tank, CSE’s report revealed that on an average, 8.5 Percent out of every 10,000 children in India die before they turn five, while the risk was higher for girls as 9.6 percent out of 10,000 girls die before five years of age due to bad air.
“Air pollution is responsible for 12.5 percent of all deaths in India. Its impact on children is equally worrying. Over 1,00,000 children below the age of five die due to bad air quality in the country,” the CSE report said.
Role of Water
Both surface and groundwater in the country are under stress. 86 water bodies are critically polluted. The bulk of the polluted water bodies are in Karnataka, Telangana, and Kerala. One of the reasons is the substantial increase (136 percent) in the number of grossly polluting industries between 2011 and 2018. Groundwater is also reeling under over-exploitation, which is running 94.5 percent of all minor irrigation schemes in the country. There has been an unsustainable increase in the number of deep tube-wells that has gone up by 80 percent between 2006-07 and 2013-14.
Role of Health
India’s rural health infrastructure is ailing. There is a 35 percent shortfall in the public health centers, where 26 percent of the positions for medical officers are lying vacant. Kerala does not have a single public health center – 24×7. Another worrying trend is that the number of new doctors qualifying every year in the country has decreased by 60 percent between 2013 and 2017. The country also shares the world’s largest absolute burden of at least 11 major neglected tropical diseases, which includes diseases like dengue.
Role of Cities
By 2050, India is projected to add 416 million urban dwellers to the world’s urban population and about 58 percent of the total global population. Keeping this in mind, India in 2015-16 announced its ambitious plan of creating 100 smart cities. Four years later, only 21 percent of the allocated funds for smart cities have been spent. In the meanwhile, most urban cities have a sizeable population living in slums, which are unfit for habitation. India has 2,613 towns with slums. Of them, 57 percent are in Tamil Nadu, Madhya Pradesh, Uttar Pradesh, Karnataka, and Maharashtra.
Antibiotic resistance is also a major cause of death of children. Dirt spread in hospitals in small towns. One reason for not paying attention to cleanliness etc. Due to the problem of waste, dumping of the hospital, the children get affected very quickly.
Role of Budget
The health budget for 2019-20 was kept at 62659 crores. 6400 crores were kept for Pradhan Mantri Jan Arogya Yojna (AB-PMJAY). But good hospitals did not have much interest in this scheme. People from poor sections cannot get their treatment in a good hospital. Due to a lack of knowledge of the scheme, apathy of the government, the administration will not be active and people are also not able to take advantage of a good health system.
Although there has been a lot of improvement in these death toll figures, the figures that exist is also a matter of worry. The country is in a state of bare need for a good budget along with a good health system.