Hindustan Times (Ranchi) - - Ranchi - Sub­hash Mishra htjhark­[email protected]­dus­tan­times.com ■

DHAN­BAD: One of the ma­jor child health pro­grammes un­der­taken in the state is de­worm­ing of chil­dren, and the state health depart­ment ex­pects to achieve 100% suc­cess by 2020.

Prin­ci­pal sec­re­tary (health) Nitin Madan Kulka­rni held a meet­ing re­gard­ing this with state health of­fi­cials on Fri­day, at Nepal House in the state cap­i­tal.

At present, the de­worm­ing suc­cess rate in Jhark­hand is 42%. Around In­dia, around 24.1 crore chil­dren are af­flicted by this com­pli­ca­tion ev­ery year. (Ac­cord­ing to the Na­tional Health Ser­vice, UK, worm in­fec­tions can cause chil­dren to lose weight, make them suf­fer from per­sis­tent di­ar­rhoea, and lead to skin rash.)

Fol­low­ing the meet­ing on Fri­day, Dr Ajit Prasad, state nodal of­fi­cer of ma­ter­nal health, said, “The health depart­ment has tar­geted 1.42 lakh chil­dren — aged one year to 19 years — in 23 dis­tricts, ex­cept Simdega, for ad­min­is­ter­ing de­worm­ing medicines.”

Na­tional De­worm­ing Day would be ob­served in Jhark­hand for two days early next year — on Fe­bru­ary 4 and Fe­bru­ary 14 — to bol­ster the mis­sion. The rea­son Simdega is ex­cluded from the De­worm­ing Day pro­gramme is that the district has al­ready fixed Jan­uary 10 as the date when all the tar­geted chil­dren would be given al­ben­da­zole (an­ti­worm) pills.

Last year, the state health depart­ment had tar­geted 1.37 crore chil­dren, but only 1.17 crore were ad­min­is­tered de­worm­ing tablets. “This time, the health depart­ment has made all an­gan­wadi cen­tres, schools, and col­leges [a part of de­worm­ing cam­paign venues] to cover the tar­geted num­ber of chil­dren,” said Dr Prasad.

The health depart­ment be­ing short of man­power, the cam­paign is be­ing sup­ported by mem­bers of Swachh Bharat Ab­hiyan, Madarsa Board, Mu­nic­i­pal Cor­po­ra­tion, Bharat Scouts and Guides, Na­tional Cadet Corps, Nehru Yuva Ken­dra, and a few other or­gan­i­sa­tions.

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