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Economic Survey 2022 On Health, Hygiene, Sanitation And Climate Change

The Economic survey 2022 tabled by Union Finance Minister Nirmala Sitharaman talked about the achievements of India’s healthcare and social sectors

Economic Survey 2022 On Health, Hygiene, Sanitation And Climate Change
Economic Survey 2022 highlights: Healthcare, hygiene & sanitation indicators show an improvement as per the survey

New Delhi: Union Finance Minister Nirmala Sitharaman tabled Economic Survey 2022 in the Lok Sabha today (January 31) ahead of the Union Budget 2022 on February 1 (Tuesday). According to the annual Economic Survey, India will see an economic growth of 8 to 8.5 per cent for the coming fiscal year, down from 9.2 per cent growth estimated in the current year. The survey also said that the economic activity has recovered to pre-pandemic level and the economy is well placed to take on the challenges in 2022-23.

Here are the key highlights of the Economic Survey 2022 in the following sectors - Healthcare, Swasth and Swachh Bharat, Nutrition and Climate, which has been written under the cloud of the Covid-19 pandemic for second year running:

  1. COVID-19 & Vaccination Programme: The economic survey said that COVID-19 vaccination is not merely a health response but is critical for opening up the economy, particularly contact-intensive services. The survey also highlighted the vaccination statistics and said that over the course of a year, India delivered 157 crore doses that covered 91 crore people with at least one dose and 66 crore with both doses. The survey said, “As on January 16, 2022, eligible population (18 year and above) vaccinated in India with first dose was 93 per cent and with second dose 69.8 per cent.”
  2. Health Indicators;
    a. Child Nutrition – Economic Survey highlighted the positive outcomes of the latest National Family Health Survey (NFHS)-5 and said that NFHS-5 shows that all child nutrition indicators have also improved at all India level. It said,
    – “Under Five Mortality Rate (U5MR) has declined from 49.7 in 2015-16 to 41.9 in 2019-21.
    – Infant Mortality Rate (IMR) has declined from 40.7 per 1000 live births in 2015-16 to 35.2 per 1000 live births in 2019-21.
    – Stunting has declined from 38 percent in 2015-16 to 36 percent in 2019-21. Wasting has also declined from 21 percent in 2015-16 to 19 percent in 2019-21.
    – And, underweight declined from 36 percent in 2015-16 to 32 percent in 2019-21.”
    b. Life Expectancy – Economic Survey highlighted that life expectancy has improved in India. It noted that life expectancy is higher in urban areas (72.6 years) than in rural areas (68.0 years). The survey also said, “Now, females are expected to live longer (70.7 years) compared to males (68.2 years).”
    c. Total Fertility Rate – Economic Survey noted that NFHS-5 shows that Total Fertility Rate (TFR), which is an average number of children per women, has come down to 2 in 2019-21 from 2.2 in 2015-16. The survey said, “Increasing use of contraceptives especially the modern methods, better family planning, and girl education possibly have contributed to the decline in the fertility rates. Access to better health infrastructure could be another factor.”
    d. Sex Ratio – Number of females per 1000 males, in the total population has risen from 991 females in 2015-16 (NFHS-4) to 1020 in 2019-21 (NFHS-5), the economic survey highlighted.
  3. Sanitation & Hygiene: The economic survey noted how initiatives like Jal Jeevan Mission and Swachh Bharat Abhiyan has benefited the society and said:- As of January 2, 2022, 5.5 crore households have been provided with tap water supply, six states/ UTs have achieved the coveted status of 100 percent households with tap water supply.
    – Since the inception of Swachh Bharat Mission on October 2, 2014, more than 10.86 crore toilets have been built in rural India
    -The phase II of Swachh Bharat Mission with a total outlay of Rs 1,40,881 crore will be on ODF sustainability and Solid & Liquid Waste Management
    -Till now, 2,194 villages have been declared as ODF Plus
    – As per NFHS-5 findings, population living in households that use an improved sanitation facility has increased from 48.5 percent in 2015-16 to 70.2 percent in 2019-21
  4. Climate Finance & Sustainable Development Goals: Economic Survey noted that climate finance will remain critical to successful climate action for India to achieve its net zero carbon emission target by 2070. The economic survey said that India’s performance on the NITI Aayog SDG (Sustainable Development Goals) India Index has improved from an overall score of 60 in 2019-20 to 66 in 2020-21. It said the figures “show progress” in India’s journey towards achieving the Sustainable Development Goals.

NDTV – Dettol have been working towards a clean and healthy India since 2014 via the Banega Swachh India initiative, which is helmed by Campaign Ambassador Amitabh Bachchan. The campaign aims to highlight the inter-dependency of humans and the environment, and of humans on one another with the focus on One Health, One Planet, One Future – Leaving No One Behind. It stresses on the need to take care of, and consider, everyone’s health in India – especially vulnerable communities – the LGBTQ populationindigenous people, India’s different tribes, ethnic and linguistic minorities, people with disabilities, migrants, geographically remote populations, gender and sexual minorities. In wake of the current COVID-19 pandemic, the need for WASH (WaterSanitation and Hygiene) is reaffirmed as handwashing is one of the ways to prevent Coronavirus infection and other diseases. The campaign will continue to raise awareness on the same along with focussing on the importance of nutrition and healthcare for women and children, fight malnutrition, mental wellbeing, self care, science and health, adolescent health & gender awareness. Along with the health of people, the campaign has realised the need to also take care of the health of the eco-system. Our environment is fragile due to human activity, which is not only over-exploiting available resources, but also generating immense pollution as a result of using and extracting those resources. The imbalance has also led to immense biodiversity loss that has caused one of the biggest threats to human survival – climate change. It has now been described as a “code red for humanity.” The campaign will continue to cover issues like air pollutionwaste managementplastic banmanual scavenging and sanitation workers and menstrual hygiene. Banega Swasth India will also be taking forward the dream of Swasth Bharat, the campaign feels that only a Swachh or clean India where toilets are used and open defecation free (ODF) status achieved as part of the Swachh Bharat Abhiyan launched by Prime Minister Narendra Modi in 2014, can eradicate diseases like diahorrea and the country can become a Swasth or healthy India.

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