Health situation and trend assessment

Poverty

Multidimensional poverty

When individual and/or household income gets below what is needed for sustenance, it becomes poverty income. World Bank calls it extreme poverty when per capita income is below 1.25 PPP $. From health stand point, it is the inadequacy of required amount of food consumption, self health, and access to health care system which determines poverty. Income poverty can be circumvented to some extent in welfare economy where health and education (the other human capability measure) are free . Therefore, there is new thinking about alternate to income poverty. UNDP's multidimensional poverty is one of those alternates. It looks at multiple deprivations at the individual level in health, education, and standard of living. They call it acute poverty and a high resolution lens on poverty.

Commonly used indicators of poverty are (i) Poverty (% of population) living at less than PPP $ 1.25 a day (ii) Poverty (% of population) living below national poverty line (iii) Percentage of population in Multidimensional Poverty.

Situation in SEAR

As shown in the graph below, out of nine SEA Region countries for which data is available, while at one end three countries (Timor-Leste, Bangladesh, India) have over 50% population in poverty on one or more of the three dimensions (Health, Education, Standard of living), at other end three (Sri Lanka, Maldives, Thailand) have 5% or less population in poverty.

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