Inequalities in Childhood Malnutrition in India: Some Evidence on Group Disparities
U. S. Mishra
This paper examines inequalities in child malnutrition in India through three distinct — although inter-related — types of empirical analysis. First, it reports the socio-economic inequalities in childhood malnutrition across different Indian states. Second, it decomposes the gap in malnutrition between children belonging to poor and non-poor households to understand the disadvantageous distribution of health determinants and their effects. This analysis indicates that the distribution of endowments and positive maternal characteristics are significant in widening the gap between the child malnutrition among poor and non-poor households. Third, it examines the inter-group disparities in child malnutrition and notes that child groups privileged in terms of income, mother's nutritional status and education have lower malnutrition, whereas the group adverse in all three characteristics endures the most. The paper concludes that policies to reduce malnutrition inequalities should recognize that endowment revisions can be more effective if appended with behavioural interventions.
Child health, Malnutrition, Health inequality, Group inequality, Decomposition, India,
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