India in 2015 had more deaths among children under five than any other country and had large disparities in the under-five mortality rate between richer and poorer states, according to a study led by researchers at the Johns Hopkins Bloomberg School of Public Health.
In the study, published May 13 in The Lancet Global Health, the researchers analyzed state-level Indian data on the causes of death among children under five for the years 2000-2015. They found that India made great progress during the period, reducing annual mortality among children under five from 2.5 million in 2000 to 1.2 million in 2015. But among India’s states, great disparities remained: The highest mortality rate, in Assam, a state in northeastern India, was more than 7 times that in the western state of Goa.
The analysis showed that despite great progress since 1990 — and even since 2000 when the under-five mortality rate was 90.5 deaths per 1,000 live births — India in 2015 was still well above the MDG target, at 47.8 deaths per 1,000 live births.
Dr. Li Liu, assistant professor in the Bloomberg School’s department of population, family and reproductive health, was lead author.
In another study published in the same issue of The Lancet Global Health, researchers from the International Vaccine Access Center at the Bloomberg School estimated that two vaccine-preventable diseases — Streptococcus pneumoniae and Haemophilus influenzae type b (Hib) — accounted for 69,000 and 16,000 deaths in children under five, respectively, in India in 2015.Friday Letter Submission