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National Family Health Survey-5

Last Updated : 16 Jun, 2022
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The National Family Health Study(NFHS) is a large-scale survey conducted across the country to collect data on a variety of concerns. These criteria would eventually aid the Ministry of Health and Family Welfare (MOHFW) in developing policies and initiatives. These policies are designed to aid in the improvement of India’s most disadvantaged communities. In 1992-93, the National Family Health Survey was undertaken for the first time. The National Center for Health Statistics offers estimates on key variables such as population, family planning, child and maternal health, nutrition, adult health, and domestic violence, among other things. In 2019-20, the first part of the fifth cycle of the National Family Health Survey (NFHS-5) was performed, with results reported in December 2020.

The major goal of the NFHS is to generate trustworthy and comparative statistics on health, family welfare, and other emergent concerns in repeated cycles. In India, four rounds of the NFHS were successfully completed. Many significant indicators are also estimated at the district level in NFHS-5. In terms of content, NFHS-5 is comparable to NFHS-4.

National Family Health Survey-5

During 2019-20, the data was collected by the NFHS-5. It was carried out in around 6.1 lacs households. Phase 2 of the trial was postponed because to the COVID-19 outbreak. The data from the NFHS-5 will be valuable in establishing standards. It aids in the examination of the healthcare sector’s progress throughout time. The results of NFHS-5 help to identify the need for additional initiatives. This has a particular focus on identifying people in need of critical services, as well as providing data for the success of present initiatives. It serves as a monitoring indicator for the country’s 30 Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs), which it wants to accomplish by 2030. The NFHS 5 is receiving technical help from ICF International, as well as financial aid from the US Agency for International Development.

Preschool education, handicapped access, bathroom access, death registration, menstrual hygiene, and abortion procedures and reasons are all new and critical topics in NFHS-5. The number of clinical, anthropocentric, and biochemical tests (CAB) available has increased. It has been expanded to include waist and hip circumference measures, as well as the age range for blood pressure and glucose tests. On the other side, HIV testing has been phased out.

New target areas in NFHS-5 will provide necessary information for enhancing existing programs and developing new policy intervention techniques. The following are the areas:

  • Immunization domains for children have been expanded.
  • Micro-nutrient components for youngsters.
  • Hygiene during menstruation.
  • Alcohol and tobacco usage frequency.
  • Noncommunicable illnesses include additional components.
  • Age ranges for assessing hypertension and diabetes have been expanded to include everyone aged 15 and up.


If we look at the statistics at the national level, we can see that child nutrition indicators have improved marginally. It caused stunting to decrease from 38% to 36%, wasting to decrease from 21% to 19%, and underweight to decrease from 36% to 32% Child nutrition has improved in all phase-II States/UTs. Although the improvement is not significant, it is doubtful that these indicators would improve dramatically in a short period of time.  Anaemia is still a cause of concern for both children and mothers. In comparison to NFHS-4, more than half of children and adults (including pregnant women) in all phase-II States/UTs and across India are anaemic. Despite the fact that the composition of iron-folic acid (IFA) pills taken by pregnant women for 180 days or more has changed significantly. Exclusive breastfeeding of children under the age of six months has increased from 55 percent in 2015-16 to 64 percent in 2019-21 across India. All of the phase-II States/UTs are making significant progress as well. The NFHS’ main goal has been to improve India’s demographic and health database by providing data that is both credible and trustworthy. If additional schemes like these are implemented, India will be able to develop quickly.

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