National Family Health Survey (NFHS-4) 2015-16: Telangana


Since 1992, the International Institute for Population Sciences, Mumbai, has conducted the National Family Health Survey (NFHS) for the Ministry of Health and Family Welfare. The survey provides detailed information on population, health and nutrition in each state and union territory of India.   

This state report on Telangana presents the important findings of the survey’s fourth round, conducted in 10 districts between April 6 and September 19, 2015. Previous NFHS surveys were conducted in 1992-93, 1998-99 and 2005-06.

NFHS-4 surveyed 572,000 households in 640 districts of India (Census 2011). In Telangana, data was gathered from 7,786 households; 7,567 women (aged 15-49) and 1,133  men (aged 15-54) were interviewed.

The survey collected information on the socio-economic characteristics of households, education, fertility, family planning, infant and child mortality, and maternal and child health. It also gathered information on reproductive health, sexual behaviour, marriage, domestic violence, and attitudes towards gender roles. And it included information on the prevalence of HIV/AIDS, nutrition, water and sanitation, health services and insurance.


  1. Of all the households surveyed in Telangana, 15 per cent were headed by women, 74.47 per cent lived in a pucca (permanent) structure, and 98 per cent had electricity. 

  2. Around 60 per cent of households in urban areas and 25 per cent in rural areas had piped water in their dwellings. 7 per cent of urban households and 51 per cent of rural households did not have sanitation facilities and had to defecate in the open.

  3. School attendance was 96 per cent for children between 6 and 14 years, but only 78 per cent for the 15-17 age group. 24 per cent of all women and 31 per cent of all men had completed 12 or more years of schooling.

  4. The total fertility rate was 1.7 children per women. 26 per cent of women (aged 20-24) and 18 per cent of men (25-29) were married before the legal minimum age of 18 and 21, respectively. Despite an overall preference for sons, 80 per cent of women and 86 per cent of men would like to have at least one daughter.

  5. While 98 per cent of the population knew about contraception, female sterilisation accounted for 95 per cent of the total contraceptive use. 47 per cent of men believed that contraception is ‘women’s business’ and 40 per cent thought that women using contraception may become promiscuous.

  6. The infant mortality rate (IMR) was almost twice as high in rural areas (38 deaths per 1,000 live births) than in urban areas (20 deaths per 1,000 live births). Among mothers with no schooling, the IMR was 69 deaths per 1,000 live births, while it was 15 deaths per 1,000 live births among mothers with 10 or more years of schooling.

  7. Among women who gave birth in the five years preceding the survey, 95 per cent received antenatal care from a doctor, an auxiliary nurse midwife, a ‘lady health visitor’, a nurse or a midwife. 92 per cent of births took place in a health facility and 8 per cent took place at home.

  8. Around 68 per cent of children between 12 and 23 months received all the basic vaccinations against six major childhood illnesses: tuberculosis, diphtheria, pertussis, tetanus, polio, and measles. Most children were partially vaccinated and only 1 per cent did not receive any vaccinations.

  9. Of the children under five, 28 per cent were stunted, which indicates that they had been undernourished for some time. A higher proportion of Scheduled Caste and Scheduled Tribe children were undernourished as compared to those from other groups. 

  10. Only 30 per cent of all women and 50 per cent of all men had ‘comprehensive knowledge’ about HIV/AIDS. 

  11. Only 47 per cent of all women (aged 15-49) were employed in the 12 months preceding the survey as compared to 81 per cent of men in the same age group. 60 per cent of women had a bank or savings account that they themselves used and 23 per cent had ever taken a loan from a micro-credit programme.

  12. Around 45 per cent of women were allowed to go to all three of the following places by themselves: the market, a health facility, and places outside the village/community.

  13. As many as 84 per cent of women believed it is justifiable for a husband to beat his wife under some circumstances. 17 per cent of women and 12 per cent of men did not think that a wife is justified in refusing to have sex with her husband if she knows he has a sexually transmitted disease or has intercourse with other women, and if she is tired or not in the mood.

  14. Of all the women surveyed, 45 per cent had experienced physical or sexual violence. Of these, 74 per cent had neither sought help nor told anyone about the violence. 

    Focus and Factoids by Mythili Chandrasekhar.


International Institute for Population Sciences (IIPS), Mumbai

Contributors: Sarang Pedgaonkar, Dhananjay Bansod, H. Lhungdim and Sunita Kishor


Ministry of Health and Family Welfare, Government of India, New Delhi


01 Sep, 2017