Aim to cut maternal mortality ratio: Ghulam Nabi Azad

Updated: Aug 14, 2012, 13:36 PM IST

New Delhi: India is targeting to cut maternal mortality ratio by a quarter to 150 per 1,00,000 live births by 2015, Health and Family Welfare Minister Ghulam Nabi Azad told Rajya Sabha today.

"We are on track to meet the target," he said during Question Hour.

He said as per Maternal Mortality Estimation Inter-Agency Group report on `Trends in Maternal Mortality: 1990 to 2010` released this year by WHO, UNICEF, UNFPA and the World Bank, the Maternal Mortality Ratio in India has come down from 600 in 1990 to 200 per 1,00,000 live births in 2010.

"Under Millennium Development Goal (MDG), the target is to reduce by three quarters the maternal mortality ratio between 1990 and 2015," he said.

The report had classified countries into four groups - on track in meeting maternal mortality ratio, making progress, insufficient progress and no progress. "India has been placed in the `Making Progress` group," he said, adding the nation was making progress in cutting maternal mortality rate.

Some states like Kerala, Tamil Nadu, West Bengal and Gujarat have already achieved the target of maternal mortality ratio of 150 per 1,00,000 live births while some others like Haryana, Punjab and Karnataka are almost going to achieve the target. However, states like Assam, Uttar Pradesh, Rajasthan, Madhya Pradesh, Jharkhand and Orissa are lagging behind.

"As MDG goals and targets emerged in United Nations Millennium Declaration in September 2000, where 147 heads of States and 189 nations participated, India cannot unilaterally change the goals and targets set under MDGs," he said.

He said maternal mortality ratio of India has shown a decline from 301 per 1,00,000 live births in 2001-03 to 254 per 1,00,000 live births in 2004-06 and a further decline to 212 per 1,00,000 live births in 2007-09.

The Minister said the UPA has allocated Rs 70,000 crore for the National Rural Health Mission.