Shall ensure to end preventable maternal deathsin the country: Dr Harsh Vardhan

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“We shall ensure that there are no preventable maternal deaths in the country”. Stressing on the need for safe motherhood, this was stated by Dr.Harsh Vardhan, Union Minister for Health and Family Welfare at the high level meeting to review the status of Reproductive, Maternal, Newborn, Children, Adolescent and Nutrition (RMNCAH+N) interventions in the country. “Our Hon. Prime Minister Shri Narendra Modi ji has a vision of a New India where children and pregnant women do not die of preventable causes and people are able to realize their full potential in making of a “Swashth Bharat, Sudridh Bharat (Healthy India, Strong India – स्वस्थभारत, सुदृढ़भारत)”, Dr. Harsh Vardhan said. We have to work together for bringing all our energies in sync to realise this dream, he added.

Dr. Harsh Vardhanfurther stated that women are strong pillars of our vibrant society. Together women and children constitute a large part of our population. Sustained development of the country can thus be achieved only if we take holistic care of our women and children. Through our policies and programs, we shall ensure to endpreventable maternal deaths in the country. It is time for all of us to start a mass movement, a ‘Jan Andolan’ to prevent such maternal deaths.“I call upon all the gynecologists and health activists in the country to join hands with the Health Ministry and to strengthen our efforts in this direction”, he said.

He suggested a convergence approach wherein all the resources converge for accelerated outcome supported by an aggressive awareness campaign. “Innovative strategies combined with sturdy monitoring and effective surveillance are needed to ensure that our interventions are effective in achieving the desired outcomes”, he said. Working in a spirit of collaboration, Dr. Harsh Vardhan directed the officials to brainstorm the proposed strategies with gynaecologists, nutritionists, management experts, paediatricians and engage various government departments, the private sector and civil societyincluding members of the community in monitoring progress and collectively addressing the prevailing gaps and challenges. He also suggested that young and upcoming doctors to be roped in for fresh ideas.

“No child should ever die from Diarrhoea. The government will make immediate and sustained efforts to prevent this by 2022,” Dr. Harsh Vardhan also stated.He said that there is an urgent need to re-strategize our approach and make it more aggressive to achieve the target of zero diarrhoea deaths by 2022. “We have to devise innovative strategies and encourage new ideas and innovations so that we are able to reach the unreached,” he added.

Dr. Harsh Vardhan stated that no child should suffer from vaccine preventable diseases in the country. While Mission Indradhanush and Intensified MI have strengthened the full immunisation coverage in the country, a further aggressive and spirited push is needed to ensure that the dream of the Hon. Prime Minister for full immunisation coverage is achieved, where no child is left without vaccine protection, he stated. “We need to shun the ‘routine approach’ to achieve the targets of full immunization in the stipulated time frame. We have to revamp our strategy and develop a fresh approach. That is the only way we can achieve what we have set ourselves for,” Dr. Harsh Vardhan said.

While reviewing the Anaemia Mukt Bharat, Dr. Harsh Vardhan said that the programme requires innovative approach and interventionsneed to factor in the regional specificities. “We have to set achievable target by strengthening our strategy along with monitoring mechanisms. We have to generate awareness among people and build partnerships and strengthen convergence between stakeholders to take this programme forward”, Dr. Harsh Vardhan stated.