Kozhikode: Even as the government is targeting a radical shift in its services in the health sector, it transpires that the public still prefer private hospitals to government facilities for childbirths. In the year 2017-18, out of the 4,61,911 childbirths that took place in the state, only 1,47,253 were in government hospitals. The private sector claimed 3,13, 918 child births.
These figures appear in the gender statistics report of Economic and Statistics Department.
In the matter of Caesarian sections also, private hospitals lead the tally. A total of 1,86,408 Caesarian births took place in the state out of which the government hospitals had 58,402 and private hospitals 1,28,006. The highest number of Caesarian cases were reported from Malappuram with 26,853. Ernakulam and Kozhikode districts stood close behind with 20,380 and 20,121 respectively. These are absolute numbers and do not reflect the percentage to the population - of which Malappuram has higher than others.
The gender statistics report also highlights the fact that the awareness campaigns conducted by the Health Services Directorate have not met with much success in reducing the mortality rate of infants and mothers following delivery. In 2017-18, 740 infants were born in houses. Of this Malappuram recorded the highest number of 215, followed by Wayanad with 152. The lowest in this table is Kottayam with a mere five children born at home. Health authorities point out that more child births at home take place in tribal areas.