5th National Family Health Survey (NFHS) 2020 | UPSC

5th National Family Health Survey (NFHS) 2020 | UPSC


Universal Healthcare Coverage Day celebrated in Health Ministry

      WHY IN NEWS:

  • 1153 Primary Healthcare Worker felicitated for Exemplary Service
  • Dr. Harsh Vardhan releases 5th National Family Health Survey (NFHS) for 17 States and 5 UTs
  • SDG Dashboard and NCD Medical Officer App also released
MINISTRY? :-Ministry of Health and Family Welfare
SYLLABUS COVERED: GS 2 : 3 : Primary Health Care : Health


For PRELIMS it is important to digest this survey with the help of comparisons of factual information.

For MAINS compare the previous survey and the latest one . Take a note of challenges and possible outcomes . Let us dive in !


Nearly 30 crore footfalls have been recorded at more than 51,500 functional AB-HWC centres till date: Union Health Minister


The 5th National Family Health Survey (NFHS) which contains detailed information on population, health, and nutrition for India and its States and Union Territories.

  • This is a globally important data source as it is comparable to Demographic Health Surveys (DHS) Programme of 90 other countries.

NFHS is based on several key indicators and can be used for cross country comparisons and development indices. 

  • The present NFHS is being conducted on 6.1 lakh sample households, involving household level interviews.
  • The results of 17 States and 5 UTs have been released now as Phase-I.
  • Phase II covering the remaining 12 States and 2 UTs had their fieldwork suspended due to COVID-19.
  • The survey has been resumed from November and is expected to be completed by May, 2021.


  • Substantial improvement in maternal and child health indicators over NFHS-4 (2015-16) was recorded in the present survey.

The fertility rate has further declined, contraceptive use has increased and unmet need has been reduced in most Phase I states.

  • The survey found considerable improvement in vaccination coverage among children age 12-23 months across all states/UTs.
  • Women’s empowerment indicators (including women with bank account) also portray considerable progress.

5th National Family Health Survey (NFHS) 2020 | UPSC


The National Family Health Survey (NFHS) is a large-scale, multi-round survey conducted in a representative sample of households throughout India.


The NFHS is a collaborative project of the :

  • International Institute for Population Sciences(IIPS) Mumbai, India
  • ORC Macro Calverton, Maryland, USA
  • The East-West Center, Honolulu, Hawaii, USA.

The Ministry of Health and Family Welfare (MOHFW), Government of India, designated IIPS as the nodal agency, responsible for providing coordination and technical guidance for the NFHS. 

  • IIPS collaborated with a number of Field Organizations (FO) for survey implementation.
  • Each FO was responsible for conducting survey activities in one or more states covered by the NFHS.
  • Technical assistance for the NFHS was provided by ORC Macro and the East-West Center.


  • The First National Family Health Survey (NFHS-1) was conducted in 1992-93.
  • The survey collected extensive information on population, health, and nutrition, with an emphasis on women and young children.

Eighteen Population Research Centres (PRCs), located in universities and institutes of national repute, assisted IIPS in all stages of conducting NFHS-1.

  • All the state-level and national-level reports for the survey have already been published (48 reports in all).


  • The Second National Family Health Survey (NFHS-2) was conducted in 1998-99.
  • It was conducted in all 26 states of India .
  • Second survey added features on the quality of health and family planning services, domestic violence, reproductive health, anemia, the nutrition of women, and the status of women.


  • The Third National Family Health Survey (NFHS-3) was carried out in 2005-2006.
  • Eighteen Research Organizations including five Population Research Centres carried out the survey in 29 states of India.
  • The funding for NFHS-3 was provided by USAID, DFID, the Bill and Melinda Gates Foundation, UNICEF, UNFPA, and MOHFW, GOI.
  • ORC Macro, USA, provided technical assistance for NFHS-3.

The National AIDS Control Organization (NACO) and the National AIDS Research Institute (NARI) are providing technical assistance for the HIV component.


Many international agencies and the Central Government Ministry have provided the necessary funds to carry out the survey.

  1. United States Agency for International Development (USAID)
  2. United Nations Children’s Fund (UNICEF)
  3. Bill and Melinda Gates Foundation
  4. United Nations Population Fund (UNFPA)
  5. MOHFW, Government of India


  • Union Minister of Health and Family Welfare chaired an event to mark Universal Health Coverage Day.
  • Various schemes were discussed and new initiatives were launched .


  • COVID19 has greatly magnified the need for building resilient health care systems and ensuring their indiscriminate, equitable access to all.

‘Ayushman Bharat’ program has revolutionized primary, secondary and tertiary healthcare system in the country with a strong focus on preventive healthcare.”

  • The Pradhan Mantri Jan Aarogya Yojana (PMJAY), the government has been making quality healthcare affordable and accessible for crores of people in the country.

51,500 centers are now functional, more than 1/3 of the target has been met.

  • This has led to improved access to affordable primary healthcare services for more than 25 crore people.
  • It is our aim to establish 1.5 lakh such centers by December 2022.

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  • This also includes 12,500 AYUSH Health and Wellness Centers being set up by Ministry of AYUSH.


  • More than 6.89 crore people have been screened for Hypertension and more than 5.62 Crore people have been screened for diabetes through the HWCs.

The HWCs have also conducted over 35 lakh wellness sessions involving activities such as Yoga, Zumba, Shirodhara, Meditation. 

  • More than 1.45 crore cashless treatments have been provided to the poorest citizens under AB-PMJAY .
  • The programme is a huge source of support and security for millions of families reeling under the extreme stress of serious illness.


The SDG-3 Health Dashboard would enable Policy makers and program implementers, to identify key priorities areas that require action.

  • This will help in framing future action plan for achieving Sustainable Development Goals by 2030.


  • The NCD Medical Officer App will ensure that the missing links in the follow up of patients suffering from Non-Communicable Diseases can be established in a more effective way.

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      IASbhai WINDUP: 

  • We must do away with the status quo that got us here, and settle for nothing less than strong health systems that protect everyone — now and in the future.
  • It has been my long-standing belief that India has the ability to deliver to the world, a robust model for providing Universal Health Coverage.
     SOURCES:  PIB | 5th National Family Health Survey (NFHS) 2020 | UPSC



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