Nepal Demographic and Health Survey 2016 was launched at a programme organised by the Ministry of Health in Kathmandu.

The 2016 Nepal Demographic and Health Survey (NDHS) is the fifth survey of its kind to be implemented in the country which provides up-to-date estimates of fertility levels and preferences, marriage, sexual activity, nutrition, breast feeding practices, anaemia, childhood and maternal mortality, maternal and child health, HIV/AIDS and other sexually transmitted infections and domestic violence. The survey for the first time included the findings on prevalence of hypertension in Nepalese.

The findings of the survey highlighted major progress in maternal and child health over the last 20 years. The 2016 NDHS findings revealed a sharp decline in under-five mortality from 118 deaths per 1,000 live births in 1996 to 39 deaths per 1,000 live births in 2016. Infant mortality has decreased from 78 per 1,000 live births to 32 in the same years.

The survey measured children’s nutritional status by measuring height and weight. More than one third of the children under five were stunted in 2016. In addition, 27 per cent children are underweight while the rate was 42 per cent in 1996. The trend of anemia among children age 5-59 months has increased from 46 percent in 2011 to 53 percent in 2016.

In addition, currently women in Nepal have an average of 2.3 children. The fertility has decreased from 4.6 children per woman in 1996 to the current level in 2016. Fertility is lowest in Province-3 (1.8 children per woman) and highest in Province-2 (3 children per woman).

The findings also revealed that the use of any method of family planning by married women has nearly doubled from 29 per cent in 1996 to 53 per cent in 2016. Modern method use has increased from 26 per cent to 43 per cent during the same time period but hasn’t changed since 2006.

More than 8 out of 10 women aged 15 to 49 received antenatal care from a skilled provider — doctor, nurse and auxiliary nurse midwife and 58 per cent births are assisted by a skilled provider, the majority by doctors. One out of ten births is assisted by no one.

The 2016 NDHS data show that 57 per cent births are delivered in a health facility, a dramatic increase from 2011 when 35 per cent births were delivered in a health facility. However, 41 per cent births are still delivered at home.

The trends in basic vaccination coverage has decreased as compared to the last survey. In 2011, 87 per cent children aged 12 to 23 months received basic vaccination coverage while this trend has declined to 78 per cent in 2016.

The findings also reveal that 22 per cent women have ever experienced physical violence since age 15. Current husband that accounts for 84 per cent, is the most common perpetrator of physical violence among married woman. Similarly, seven per cent women have experienced sexual violence where 80 per cent perpetrator of sexual violence is the current husband.

The findings also reveal that 17 per cent women and 23 per cent men are hypertensive.

The overall findings of the survey shows that the health status of mother and children have improved and family is healthier than ever before. More women use contraceptive, children’s health and nutrition are improving.

The 2016 NDHS is a national representative sample of 12,862 women aged 15-49 in 11,040 surveyed households. Around 4,063 men aged 15-49 in half of the surveyed households were interviewed. It represents a response rate of 98 per cent among women and 96 per cent among men. The 2016 NDHS provides data at the national level for urban and rural areas, three ecological zones and seven provinces. Data collection took place from June 19, 2016 to January 31, 2017.

Please follow the link for full report: NDHS Final Report