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Click here and search for 29th August, 2015 Spotlight/News analysis for audio.
Maternal deaths globally are around 3 lakh, out of which 44,000 happen in India annually. Child Mortality rates are also very high, especially under 5 children. Out of 6.3 million deaths happening globally, around 1 in every 4 happens in India annually.
In 1990 all the UN members adopted the Millennium Development Goals which have quantified targets to reduce child and maternal mortality rates. The deadline was September 2015. India did not achieve the UN MDG targets, but has come a long way in reducing a significant number of deaths of children and mothers, which is commendable. For example, in 1989, India has about 2 lakh child deaths of neo-natal tetanus. Now it is less than 1 case per 1 lakh live births.
Janani Shishu Suraksha Yojana: To give total and holistic care to pregnant mothers and child – free drugs, iron and folic acid supplements, free transport to and from hospital, safe delivery etc.
Mission Indradhanush: To achieve annual growth rate of about 5% in vaccination coverage; by 2020 India will achieve 90% child vaccination coverage @ 5 % per annum (for the past 4 years we have had an annual growth rate of vaccination at the average of only about 1%). The vaccination will be given for 7 vaccination preventable diseases – diphtheria, whooping cough, tetanus, polio, tuberculosis, measles, and hepatitis B.
Delhi Declaration: Signed recently by health ministers of 22 nations to enhance resources to prevent child and maternal deaths.
The biggest challenge India still facing is the high fertility rates. India is aiming a fertility rate of 2.1.
- Infrastructure shortage in primary health care centers
- Lack of training to auxiliary nurses and staff in PHCs
- Very few numbers of doctors in the country. We have around 1 qualified MBBS doctor for every 1700 people, which is far below the universal requirement of 1 for every 1000. Currently, only 45,000 MBBS are graduating every year in the country.
- Lack of cold chain storage facilities for drugs
What can be done?
- More expenditure on health sector to improve infrastructure and resources
- More MBBS seats in private medical colleges
- Internship in rural areas for MBBS students
- Medical curriculum should give more emphasis to preventive health care rather than to treatment part.
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