Comparing Patterns and Variations in Health Status between Tribes and Non-Tribes in Odisha of Eastern India with Special Reference to Mayurbhanj District
Narayan Chandra Jana, Anuradha Banerjee, Prasanta Kumar Ghosh

Odisha (previously known as Orissa), being socio-economically backward but culturally sound, is one of the important states in Eastern India. Out of 30 districts 9 are considered as tribal districts (according to Location Quotient value) and of the total population (41,947,358 in 2011) a significant share (22.1%) goes to tribal people (8,145,081in 2011). In the present paper, various health-related indicators have been analyzed and compared for representing district-level patterns and variations in health status between tribes and non-tribes. In addition, Mayurbhanj has also been taken as a case study to represent the patterns and variations in health status at the block-level. It may be mentioned in this context that out of 30 districts in Odisha, according to Location Quotient value Mayurbhanj is the highest tribal concentrated district. The overall objective of this study is to obtain a better understanding of disparities and variations in health status in Odisha as well as in Mayurbhanj and also find out some remedial measures to overcome the health related problems. Maps have been prepared on the above mentioned indicators based on secondary data using Arc-GIS 9.3. From the analysis of the health-related indicators it is clear that the tribal dominated districts in Odisha as well as physically constrained and backward regions in Mayurbhanj represent low health status as compared to other areas. Although healthcare system in the state has improved significantly over the years, communicable and nutrition-related diseases continue to be a major problem mostly in tribal and backward areas. Finally, the authors have suggested some measures required for the improvement of healthcare services in the tribal areas and backward regions.

Full Text: PDF     DOI: 10.15640/jges.v2n2a4