70% pregnant women in India anaemic: Basics Explained

As per the latest analysis of maternal health indicators fed by states and UTs into the Centre’s Health Management Information System (HMIS) system, seven in every 10 pregnant women in the country were found to be anaemic in 2021-22, up from 67.9 per cent a year earlier with the situation even worse in the northern states of Haryana, Himachal Pradesh and Punjab.

The indicators reveals that the highest prevalence of anaemia was found in Haryana where 97.5 pc of pregnant women, who reported at health facilities for antenatal check-up in 2021-22, were found anaemic followed by 90 pc in Himachal Pradesh, 85 pc in Maharashtra, 82 pc in Mizoram and 81 pc in Punjab.

 A majority of the pregnant women captured by the data — 95.5 pc — fall in the category of mild anaemic (haemoglobin between 7.1 and 10.9 grams per decilitre) as against 4.5 pc women who had severe anaemia (less than 7 grams).

Though Kerala, Puducherry and some north eastern states recorded a lower level than national prevalence of 70 pc, even these states witnessed an increase in the prevalence of anaemia during pregnancy from 2019-2020.

Sikkim had the highest percentage (13 pc) of pregnant women with severe anaemia followed by Jammu & Kashmir (12%) and Telangana (8%).

The lowest proportion of severely anaemic pregnant women is in Himachal Pradesh at 0.6 pc.

The management of anaemia at the institutional level leaves much to be desired with only 65.56 pc pregnant women with severe anaemia treated at the institutions.

The lowest anaemia treatment rate in India is in Sikkim (17.6 pc), Mizoram (18.8 pc), Ladakh (35.5 pc) and the highest treatment rate has been found in Uttarakhand (100 pc), J&K (98.9 pc) and Maharashtra 97.8 pc.

The anaemia burden continues to grow despite the 52-year-old National Nutritional Anaemia Prophylaxis Programme.


Anemia is defined as a low number of red blood cells ; haemoglobin concentration within them . Hemoglobin is the main protein in your red blood cells. It carries oxygen, and delivers it throughout your body.

If you have anemia, your hemoglobin level will be low too. If it is low
enough, your tissues or organs may not get enough oxygen. Symptoms of
anemia — like fatigue or shortness of breath — happen because your organs aren’t getting what they need to work the way they should. The most common causes of anaemia include nutritional deficiencies, particularly iron deficiency, though deficiencies in folate, vitamins B12 and A are also important causes.

Men with haemoglobin levels of less than 13.0 grams (g) per decilitre (dL) are considered anaemic, as per World Health Organization norms. Women with levels lower than 12.0 g/dL are considered anaemic if they are not pregnant. Among pregnant women, levels lower than 11.0 g/dL signal anaemia .

Nutritional deficiency is by far the most common cause of anaemia worldwide. Nearly half the cases of nutritional deficiency-related
anaemia in India are caused by consuming too little iron. Inadequate intake of the vitamins B9 (folate) and B12 is also a frequent cause.

The flagship initiative to combat anaemia that started in 1970, the National
Anaemia Prophylaxis Programme
, concentrated on distributing iron and folic acid tablets among two vulnerable population segments–pregnant women, and children aged 1 to 5 years. Anemia Mukt Bharat was
launched in April 2018 for combating anemia.


READ:70% pregnant women in India anaemic, maximum in Haryana : The Tribune India


Leave a Comment


Welcome! Login in to your account

Remember me Lost your password?

Lost Password