Context: Recently, Union Minister of State for Health and Family Welfare informed the Rajya Sabha about various interventions taken by the government to address anaemia under Anaemia Mukt Bharat (AMB) Strategy.
What is Anaemia?
- It is a condition in which the number of red blood cells or their oxygen-carrying capacity is insufficient to meet physiologic needs, which vary by age, sex, altitude, smoking, and pregnancy status.
- Iron deficiency is the most common cause of anaemia, although other conditions, such as folate, vitamin B12 and vitamin A deficiencies, chronic inflammation, parasitic infections, and inherited disorders can all cause anaemia.
Implementing Ministry: Ministry of Health and Family Welfare is implementing the Anaemia Mukt Bharat (AMB) Strategy.
Key highlights of the strategy
- Provision of supervised biweekly iron-folic acid(IFA) supplementation by the ASHA for all under-five children
- Weekly IFA supplementation for 5-10 years old children
- Annual/biannual deworming (children and adolescents)
- Point of care testing(POCT) and treatment for in-school adolescents and pregnant women using newer technologies
- Establishing institutional mechanisms for advanced research in anaemia
- Addressing non-nutritional causes of anaemia and
- Setting a comprehensive communication strategy including mass/mid media/social media communication material (radio and TV spots, posters, job-aids, interpersonal communication material.
Major Interventions by Government under AMB Strategy
- Prophylactic Iron and Folic Acid Supplementation.
- Intensified year-round Behaviour Change Communication (BCC) Campaign and delayed cord clamping.
- Testing of anaemia using digital methods and point of care treatment.
- Addressing non-nutritional causes of anaemia in endemic pockets with special focus on malaria, hemoglobinopathies and fluorosis.
- Convergence and coordination with line department and other ministries.
- Engaging National Centre of Excellence and Advanced research on Anaemia Control for capacity building of health care providers.
- Monitoring progress in States/UTs using Anaemia Mukt Bharat Dashboard.
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