Read the following passage carefully and answer the questions given below it. Certain words/phrase are printed in ‘’bold’’ to help you to locate them while answering some of the questions.
Using infant mortality as a key indicator of the status of children, we now begin to have the broad features of a hypothesis as to the cause of the higher or lower mortality rates. One aspect is the ‘’complex’’ of factors involving the ‘’access’’ of mothers to trained personnel and other facilities for children delivery, the nutritional status of pregnant and nursing mothers and the quality of health-care and nourishment which babies receive. The other aspect, indicated by rural-urban differentials, is the possible importance of human settlement patterns in relation to the availability of health-care and related facilities such as potable water, excreta disposal systems, etc. Thus, in a special sense it is much cheaper available to a community when it is densely settled rather than widely dispersed.
It is possible to argue, however, that both these sets of factors are closely related to a third one, namely income levels. Poorer mothers and babies have less access to health-care facilities and nourishment than those who are better-off, urban communities are on average much better-off than rural communities. That economic conditions play a crucial role in determining the status of both mother and child is beyond dispute. But the question really is whether this is the only decisive factor or whether factors such as the availability of medical facilities, health-care programmes and nutritional programmes have an independent role. If so, then the settlement patterns which affect service delivery to the mother and child target groups become a relevant consideration. These are clearly issues of some importance for policy and programme planning.