Issue 41: Health Promotion and Social Development
(Vol. 10, No. 4, October-December, 2012)

1. Impact of Migrants’ Remittance on Health and Nutritional Status of Children in Rural Orissa by S. N. Tripathy

Abstract:Migration is an integral part in the process of economic development and overall development discourses. Mostly migrants are getting employment opportunities through social networks such as friends and relatives, who are already in the mainstream of workforce at destination. Migration directly increases the income of the recipient and can help smooth household consumption, especially in response to adverse events such as crop failure or health crisis. In most circumstances, migrant’s remittances appear to be associated with increased household investments in health education and social status.

Enjoyment of good health is an essential component of measuring human development through increased standard of living. Increased standard of living is a crucial factor to improve health status and develop human capital formation. There exists a strong relationship between migration and health status. Apparently, migration may improve health status simply because it provides additional income to spend on health care among migrant households. Especially in case of child health, an important aspect and key determinant of sound health in adulthood, leading to enhanced capacity for future productivity.

Orissa, the poorest state in India, both in terms of socio-economic and demographic characteristics (Census 2001), with 86 percent of its total population living in the rural area; mostly depend on agriculture as its prime source of livelihood. But agriculture being a seasonal activity, majority of these rural people migrate (both in interstate and intrastate form of migration) in search of an alternative source of livelihood during the lean season. In rural Orissa, internal migration (Intra and inter states) plays an important role to influence the socio-economic and health status of its people. Against this background, an attempt has made in this paper with the help of both primary and secondary data, to comprehend the improvement of child health through the impact of migrants’ remittances.

2. Health Status of Scheduled Castes: A Study in Visakhapatnam and West Godavari Districts of Andhra Pradesh by D. Pulla Rao

Abstract:The term Dalit is mainly confined to Scheduled Castes (SCs). The term SC was first used by the British in the Government of India Act, 1935. SCs are totally marginalized from the mainstream of society and were deprived in every aspect of their livelihood. In this paper we have described the health conditions of sample households, health schemes by the government, health services provided by the government and sample households awareness regarding the government schemes and services etc. About 97 per cent of the sample households have suffered from ill health in the recent past. In Visakhapatnam district 50.22 per cent and in West Godavari district 49.78 per cent are ill out of total 669 diseased persons. The disease prevalence rate is high in females in both Visakhapatnam (73.68) and West Godavari (56.07) districts in the age group of 0-14 years. With regard to the total diseased persons, majority of them are spending ` 501-1000/- (39.91%), 36.62 per cent are spending below ` 500 and 23.47 per cent are spending above ` 1000/-. In Visakhapatnam district, 33 per cent and in West Godavari district 34 per cent of the sample households are benefited from Rajiv Arogyasri Scheme (RAS). In West Godavari district more sample households have undergone the family planning operation and they are aware about AIDS and causes for the disease when compared with Visakhapatnam district sample households.

3. Social Inequity and Health Status of Dalits in India by Virendra B. Shahare

Abstract:A great majority of Dalits are under the line of poverty and deprived of adequate access to basic needs of life such as health, education, housing, food, security, employment, justice and equity. Health issues of these groups are of great concern. Centuries together the discrimination faced by Dalits at the cost of the Brahmanical obsession with "purity and pollution" has had a detrimental effect on all the dimensions of their health. Even today inequalities in health status are the most grave and inadmissible as it has a direct impact on individual's right to life. The health status of Dalit women and children are the most vulnerable unlike any other sections of the society. Dalits are less likely to benefit from the meager health care benefits provided by the government due to social exclusion and discrimination. The statistical information about Dalit health status is quite alarming. Dalit men and women are more likely to be underweight. Maternal health care is free in India, but Dalit women receive less prenatal care. Dalit infants and child mortality rate is very high, compared to the non Dalit rate. Thus the present paper evaluates the health status of Dalits and the health delivery system in general and of Dalits in particular. The paper explores the importance of social determinants of Dalits that contribute to their well being such as food availability, nutritional status, accessing drinking water etc. It examines how social exclusion and discrimination of Dalits persist and how they are denied access to health services. The paper argues that the consequences of discriminatory practices severely limit Dalit children from accessing health services, are attributable to the poor health and high level of mortality among them.

4. Integrated Health Development Through Nutritional Programme: A Case Study of Kora Tribe by Sujit Kumar Paul & Kallol Das

Abstract:The socio-economic development of the country hinges on the health status of the children. UN Human Rights Council in Geneva found that India has the largest number of undernourished and malnourished people inclulding women and children in the world. Government has many programmes to extend health service and uplift the health status of the country. Mainly children and women are the most vulnerable section of any society and they are the suffering the most among all. Particularly tribal children are malnourished and under weight and have more risk for surviving. Tribals have their own culture, they have their own life style, their education, awareness and their perception holding them back to lead a good healthy life. Through this study attempt has been made to check how several factors hinder them to access nutrition and lead a healthy life and how an external organization intervenes in this sector to uplift their nutritional status.

5. Panchayati Raj Institutions in Maternal and Child Health Care Services: Beneficiaries’ Perspective by Arindam Das

Abstract:In India there exist substantial differences in availability and utilization of health care services not only among states but also amongst districts within the same state; as a result there is differences in type of intervention needed. Area specific, micro level measurement should be taken to minimize this short of disparities; in which Panchayats can play a vital role.

The present study aims at focusing two major facets of maternal and child health care, viz. antenatal care and extent of delivery care, besides it tries to investigate the utilization of child immunization in the district of South 24Parganas of West Bengal. Further, it tries to depict the influence of various socio-economic, demographic, health related variables, as well as influence of Panchayati Raj Institutions on utilization of maternal and child health care services.

The data has been collected through a primary survey during April to July 2005. Three hundred women who have given birth preceding two years of the survey have been interviewed. Frequency distribution, bi-variate analysis, and regressions have been carried out for the analysis purpose. Also indices have been constructed to show the level of involvement of panchayat functionaries towards maternal and child health care services.

The analysis reveals that the utilization of maternal and child health care services is determined by several socio-economic characteristics as well as the involvement of PRIs. Along with other variables, education of the beneficiaries, economic prosperity and involvement of panchayat functionaries in health related activities found to have significant effect on determination of maternal and child health care services.

6. Public Expenditure on Health Sector and its Impact on Labour Productivity in India by Kalpana Sahoo & Narayan Sethi

Abstract:The present study examines the impact of health sector on labour productivity in India. This study uses the variables like Per-capita Gross National Income (PcGNI), Gross Domestic Product (GDP), Public Expenditure on Education (PEE), Public Expenditure on Health (PEH), Population (Popu), Public Expenditure on rural development (PER), Public Expenditure on infrastructure (PEI) and Total Labour productivity (TLP). In this paper GDP and PcGNI are used as the proxy of economic growth and development respectively. The present study is based on the secondary annual time series data collected from the World Development Indicators (WDI) published by World Bank, Handbook of Statistics on Indian Economy published by the Reserve Bank of India and Economic Survey, published by Govt. of India. The study employed Ordinary Least Square (OLS) test to examine the impact of public expenditure on health sector on labour productivity of India using the annual time series data from 1990-91 to 2010-11. The simple OLS results find that health sector is considered as a significant determining factor of labour productivity in India. The result also indicates that public expenditure on health sector has significant positive impact on labour productivity of India during the study period. The study concludes that health sector has its own significance for Indian economy which can't be replaced by any other sector and it can't be ignored in the name of higher economic growth. The study suggests that to attend MDGs and Sustainable development, health sector should develop simultaneously with other sectors. It is the need of the hour to give priority to all the major sectors of the economy i.e. health, education, infrastructure etc. to sustain and compete with the present dynamic world.

7. Suicide Behaviour in India: Its Identification and Prevention by Sudeep Kumar

Abstract:The phenomenon of suicide has emerged as a global problem. People attempt and commit suicide for a variety of reasons, and in diverse social and personal circumstances. In India the number of suicide cases per year is increasing at an alarming rate. But, as a result of prevailing social and religious attitudes suicide is under reported. Several researchers have studied suicide in different parts of India to understand the risk factors and protective factors in order to formulate strategies to prevent this social pathology. In the light of the above, the present paper attempts to study the suicide behaviour in India with special reference to its causes, identification, treatment and the strategies of prevention. The study is based on secondary literature like books, journals, reports and web based research within the context of suicide behaviour. Suicides can be prevented at individual level, family level, community level, and religious level by teachers, councillors and mass media. It is high time to make action plans for preventing suicide on the part of society, government and NGOs..Suicide prevention in India requires public health interventions.There is a need to reduce the medicalisation of personal and social distress and focus on other underlying causes of human suffering, including poverty, economic inequality and lack of social justice.

"If I had no sense of humour, I would long ago have committed suicide."
— Mahatma Gandhi