‘JK Birth Rate Has Come Down Considerably’

‘JK Birth Rate Has Come Down Considerably’

18 July 2013
Rising Kashmir


Srinagar: The birth rate of Jammu and Kashmir State has come down considerably from 18.3 per thousand in 2012-13 to current 17.8 per thousand, which has become possible due to education, infrastructure development in health sector and communication between health department and society established by ASHA workers, particularly in the rural areas. This information was given by concerned health authorities at monthly review meeting of Health Services Kashmir held under the chairmanship of Minister of State for Health Shabir Ahmad Khan here on Thursday. The meeting was further told that two years earlier, the birth rate was 18.3 per thousand and it has now come down to 17.8 per thousand. The authorities also expressed confidence that in the next year the birth rate will come down further and added that Jammu and Kashmir State is among the few states of the Country where birth rate has declined. The Government has attributed this significant achievement to the pioneering work of National Rural Health Mission, in the rural sector. It was given out in the meeting that earlier, there used to be only one auxiliary nurse midwife (ANM) working in a cluster. Now, the number of ANM has increased and ASHA (Accredited Social Health Activist) workers are working with devotion in the rural sector. They have established good communications between health department and society, which has resulted in lowering of the birth rate. The meeting was also informed that at the same time, infant mortality rate too has come down to 41 per thousand in 2011 while as neonatal mortality rate came down to 32 per thousand, and health department has fixed target to further bring down infant motility rate to 33 per thousand besides neonatal motility rate to 26 per thousand during current financial year. All these figures are the outcome of improved pregnancy management and higher numbers of institutional delivery. During first quarter of current fiscal 14,273 deliveries were made in hospitals, while this year the Health Department has a target to achieve maximum number of deliveries in Government Health Institutions, the meeting was told. The meeting was informed that as many as 12,000 pregnant women have been benefited under Janani Suraksha Yojana (JSY) during current financial year up to June 2013. It was further informed that JSY is a safe motherhood intervention being implemented under NRHM with the objective of reducing maternal and neonatal mortality by promoting institutional deliveries among the pregnant women. The meeting was told that under the scheme, pregnant women delivering their children in government run hospitals get paid incentives. A pregnant woman in rural areas gets Rs 1400 while in urban area she gets Rs 1000, whereas Rs 500 is paid to BPL woman delivering at home and Rs 600 to ASHA worker helping in the delivery. Similarly, under another scheme Janani Shishu Suraksha Yojana (JSSK) also known as 'Maa Tujhe Salaam', the pregnant women and sick neonates are being given free treatment, the meeting informed. Speaking on the occasion, Health Minister underscored the need for reducing Neonatal and Infant Mortality rates in the state by taking concrete health care measures. He stressed upon the concerned authorities to reach out to people at grassroots level for better implementation of NRHM, which guarantees to provide quality health care facilities to those in rural areas. He underscored the need to focus on decreasing the neonatal mortality by improving the facility based and home based newborn care.