Goans richer than other Indians
17 Jan 2009
PANAJI: Goans have more wealth than their counterparts in other states. This was discovered by the National Family Health Survey 3, which reveals that the state handsomely meets the three essential requirements of roti, kapda aur makaan.
The report states that over 55% of Goan households are in the highest wealth quintile (a fifth of a given amount). Only 23% of Goa’s households are in the three lowest wealth quintiles as compared to about 60% in the rest of the country. In Goa only 3% of the households fall in the lowest wealth quintile, of which 1% are in urban areas and 5% in rural areas.
Among all states, Goa along with Punjab is third, behind Delhi and Himachal Pradesh in terms of electrification, as 85% urban households and 59% rural households live in pucca house and more than 96% have electricity.
The NFHS-3, conducted in 2005-06, is based on a sample of 3231 households to obtain information on population, health and nutrition in the state and reveals that two-third households in state (82% in urban and 44% in rural areas) have piped water, while 24% of households have no toilet facilities. Of these, 14% are in urban areas.
The report also states that a majority of the people go to the private medical sector for treatment, either due to lack of a government facility in the vicinity, poor quality of government health care and long waiting periods in government health facilities.
Education is also a priority in the state and only 13% of women and 6% of men have never gone to school. About 49% of the people in the age group of 15 to 49 have completed 10 or more years of education. However, NFHS-3 figures show that Goa has yet to attain 100% literacy. According to the survey, a person is literate if they have either completed at least standard VI or passed a simple literacy test conducted as part of the survey. The results showed that 84% women and 90% of men in the age of 15 to 49 are literate.
The survey goes on to say that adults in Goa suffer from a dual burden of malnutrition, as about one-fourth of adults are too thin, while on the other hand 20% of the women and 15% of the men are overweight or obese.
The report also states that 52% of women and 60% of men have a healthy weight for their height. In comparison, about one-fourth (26%) of the children under the age of five years are stunted or too short for their age, which indicates that they are undernourished for some time.
Incidentally, the prevalence of anaemia in children in the state has declined over the years, but that among married women this has increased by 3%. About 38% of women and children and 10% of men in the state are anaemic. Yet the nutritional status of children in Goa is better than in most other states, the report noted.