India tops the list of countries that are said to have the highest mortality rates during delivery. A quarter of women of reproductive age in India are undernourished, with a body mass index (BMI) of less than 18.5 kg/m (Source: NFHS 4 2015-16). Nearly 68% of under-5 deaths result from malnourishment of children or their mothers.
The onset of the COVID-19 pandemic and the resultant nationwide lockdown impacted the production and access to menstrual hygiene products for millions of girls and women. With health services focussed on COVID-19 care, sexual and reproductive health care services have been severely impacted for girls and women from economically underprivileged families. This has created an awareness of women’s health and hygiene needs. Along with sanitation, issues of menstrual health and nutrition need to be addressed.