The infant mortality rate (IMR) is higher in the State compared to other South Indian states, according to S Selva Kumar, State mission director of the National Rural Health Mission (NRHM).

For every 10 lakh children born every year in the State, nearly 35,000 die even before completing one year. This compares poorly with Kerala, which has reported 12,000 infant deaths, said Kumar. The officer said folk dance and drama were an effective means to create awareness on health among the people.