Ambiguity over Karnataka’s health index rank


Experts from Karnataka say that the fall in the rank of the state in the Health Index Report 2015-2016 is attributed to the over estimation of other states with respect to their performance in the Health sector.

Bangalore, March 13, 2018: The Society for Community Health Awareness Research and Action (SOCHARA) disagree with the Health Index Report 2015-2016 for Karnataka.

The report produced by the National Institution for Transforming India (NITI Aayog), highlights that the state has slipped from seventh position in 2014-15 to the ninth position in 2015-16.

Society for Community Health Awareness Research and Action (SOCHARA) states the report on health index is based on various indicators and data for each indicator is compiled and given by the states.

Dr. Ravi Narayan, Community Health Advisor for Public Health, Industrial Health, Preventive and Social medicine of SOCHARA, said, “It is important to know that what are the indicators that are been used by different states. The indicators should be given and compiled centrally by NITI Aayog. In the present method of doing this calculation any state in order to win the competition can manipulate the data and show it to NITI Aayog.”

“There is a need of co-operative federalism wherein state, center and local bodies come together to solve the problem rather than putting out numbers and ranking health index”, Dr. Narayan further added.

On improving the health situation in the state Dr. Narayan said that we need more public health doctors, family medicine and general planning doctors at the district level in rural Karnataka to make the situation better.

However, Dr. Alok Kumar, public health advisor, NITI Aayog said that the data is being compiled by the third party who do their independent survey and make the report.

But NITI Aayog’s reference guidebook published in the year 2016 clearly state under the methodology section “States will enter basic data for each indicator for a base year and a reference year which will be specified based on the availability of data.”

Dr. N Devadasan, Director of Institute of Public Health, Bangalore said, “Though the data is good but as far as those specific data which are complied by various states can be fabricated.”

Dr. Naina Rani, public health advisor, Karnataka health and family welfare said that though the reports have many faults in it but being a government employee she cannot comment against NITI Aayog’s report.

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