Improved Indicators of Infant Mortality for Integrated Primary Healthcare Programmes

D. A. Sack, S. Ahmed, A. Razzaque, J. Chakraborty, M. Yunus

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

3 Scopus citations


Mortality and fertility rates are decreasing rapidly in many developing countries. It is argued that the indices commonly used as measures of these changes, i.e. infant mortality rate and fertility rate, ignore the interaction between mortality and fertility, and do not reflect their combined impact in lowering overall infant mortality. The paper proposes new indicators of infant mortality, termed fertility-adjusted infant mortality ratio (FIMR), age-specific, fertility-adjusted IMR (AFIMR), and total infant mortality ratio (TIMR) that are more sensitive to rapid demographic changes. These indicators include the combined effects of changes in both fertility and infant mortality rates on overall infant mortality in a region and appear to measure the effects of integrated health programmes better. Further, these conceptualize the mother-infant pair as an appropriate unit with which to monitor mortality, and may be used for guiding allocation of resources intended to lower infant mortality. The application and usefulness of these indicators have been illustrated, using one hypothetical example and empirical data from the maternal-child health and family-planning programme in Matlab, Bangladesh, as well as data from white and black population groups in the U.S.A. The results of these examples demonstrate that the new indicators are more sensitive than traditional measures when describing infant mortality, and may better reflect the perception in infant mortality status in the community.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)61-68
Number of pages8
JournalJournal of Health Population and Nutrition
Issue number2
StatePublished - Dec 1 2000


  • Fertility
  • Infant mortality
  • Maternal mortality
  • Primary healthcare

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Food Science
  • Public Health, Environmental and Occupational Health
  • Health, Toxicology and Mutagenesis


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