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Does Sanitation Affect Health Outcomes? Evidence from India

Das, Amarendra and Das, Bibhunandini (2015): Does Sanitation Affect Health Outcomes? Evidence from India.

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In this paper we have attempted to unravel the disparity in sanitation facilities across rural and urban regions of Indian states and the impact of sanitation on health outcomes. Based on the 69th National Sample Survey data set which covers more than 95 000 households we find a wide disparity in the access to sanitation facilities across rural and urban areas of Indian states and across states. While the north-eastern and southern states perform better in sanitation indicators, the eastern and central part of India performs poorly. So far as the relationship between the sanitation and health outcome is concerned our analysis shows that better sanitation facilities do have a positive impact on the health outcomes. From our analysis of four diseases (stomach problem, malaria, skin diseases and fever) that are more caused due to sanitation facilities we observed that better sanitation facilities in terms of access to toilets and bathroom access to regular safe drinking water, practice of storing drinking water in metal or non-metal container, absence of flies and mosquitoes, having separate kitchen and proper disposal of wastes reduces the incidence of diseases

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