In India, the infant mortality rate for girls finally equalised to the rate for boys in 2020. In 16 states, the infant mortality rate remained higher for female infants than male infants, but since 2011 the gap has significantly reduced.
In rural India, even though the gap between the infant mortality rate between female infants and male infants has reduced, the female infant mortality rate remained marginally higher than the male infant mortality rate.
However, in urban India, the gap between male and female infant mortality rates was higher in 2011, but the female infant mortality rate fell below the rate of males by 2020.
Female Infant Mortality Rate
The Sample Registration System (SRS) Statistical Report, revealed that in 2011, all states except for one had a higher infant mortality rate for female infants than male infants. In Uttarakhand, the male and female infant mortality rates were equal.
By 2020, Andhra Pradesh, Delhi, Maharashtra, Tamil Nadu, and Uttarakhand had an equal male and female infant mortality rate. In several states, Chhattisgarh, Bihar, Assam, Jammu & Kashmir, Jharkhand, Karnataka, Rajasthan, Odisha, Punjab, Telangana, and Uttar Pradesh, the female infant mortality was higher than the male infant mortality rate.
With a female infant mortality rate of 41 and a male infant mortality rate of 35, Chhattisgarh had the most significant gap in the infant mortality rate in 2020. In all of the states, the infant mortality rates in rural areas were higher than in urban areas.
According to data from the United Nations, among countries where the infant mortality rate was above 20, India was the only nation where the male and female infant mortality rates were almost the same.
11 states in India achieved the UN Sustainable Development Goals (SDG) target of less than 25 in children under-five mortality rate.
Infectious diseases, such as diarrhoea, pneumonia, and malaria, along with preterm birth complications, birth asphyxia, congenital anomalies, and trauma remain the leading causes of death for children under five years of age.
On average, the under-five mortality rate of female children is higher than that of male.
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