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Citation Information

Type Journal Article - Universal Journal of Education and General Studies
Title Changes in mortality in Kerala, India: Some emerging concerns
Volume 1
Issue 8
Publication (Day/Month/Year) 2012
Page numbers 234-241
URL http://universalresearchjournals.org/ujegs/pdf/2012/August/Thomas.pdf
The pattern of mortality reflects the status of healthcare in a society and, therefore has implications for policy making. Kerala has achieved significant reduction in mortality and high life expectancy during the last century, which is often comparable with those of developed countries: an achievement often attributed to the better healthcare policies of the state. Most developed countries have already entered into a ‘stage of delayed onset of degenerative diseases’ through a higher reduction of mortality in adult and old age groups. Though the performance of mortality indicators in Kerala is often comparable with that of the developed countries, information available on mortality reduction is sketchy. Keeping this in mind, the paper analyses the importance of mortality reduction mainly in adult and old age groups using the methodology as adopted by Olshansky and Ault (1986). Within this framework, the paper
analyzes Temporary Life Expectancy (TLE), Annual Relative Change in TLE, Survival curves as well as changing pattern of causes of death in Kerala. The data used are from SRS (1971-2008) and Survey reports of CDS-R and MCCD. The study has found that though overall mortality rates have declined in Kerala, the decline was slower in adult ages, especially among the males. A major cause behind this was high morbidity due to lifestyle/degenerative diseases which, besides increasing mortality, made a good proportion of the population vulnerable to increased healthcare burden. Though healthcare policies in Kerala are adequate in addressing the health issues of infants, children and mothers in reproductive ages, major policy shifts are required to address the health problems of adults, especially males.

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