Under National Health Mission (NHM), the provision of health care to children particularly in rural areas is given priority attention. The details of the interventions to improve the health of children are as below.
It entitles all pregnant women delivering in public health institutions to absolutely free and no expense delivery including Caesarean section. The initiative stipulates free drugs, diagnostics, diet, besides free transport from home to institution, between facilities in case of a referral and drop back home and free blood if required. Similar entitlements have been put in place for all sick infants accessing public health institutions for treatment till one year of age.
Setting up of facilities for care of sick newborn such as Special New Born Care Units (SNCUs), Newborn Stabilization Units (NBSUs) and Newborn Care Corners (NBCCs) at different levels is a thrust area under NHM.
Home based newborn care through ASHAs has been initiated to improve newborn practices at the community level and early detection and referral of sick newborn babies.
India Newborn Action Plan (INAP) has been launched with an aim to reduce neonatal mortality and stillbirths.
Vitamin K injection at birth, antenatal corticosteroids for preterm labour, kangaroo mother care and injection gentamicin to young infants in cases of suspected sepsis.
Integrated Action Plan for Pneumonia and Diarrhoea (IAPPD) launched in four states with highest child mortality (UP, MP, Bihar and Rajasthan).
Nutritional Rehabilitation Centres (NRCs) have been established for management of severe acute malnutrition in children.
Appropriate Infant and Young Child Feeding practices are being promoted in convergence with Ministry of Woman and Child Development.
Village Health and Nutrition Days (VHNDs) are organized for imparting nutritional counselling to mothers and to improve child care practices.
A name based Mother and Child Tracking System has been put in place which is web based to ensure registration and tracking of all pregnant women and newborn babies so that provision of regular and complete services to them can be ensured.
Rashtriya Bal Swasthya Karyakram (RBSK) for health screening and early intervention services have been launched to provide comprehensive care to all the children in the age group of 0-18 years in the community. The purpose of these services is to improve the overall quality of life of children through early detection of birth defects, diseases, deficiencies, development delays including disability.
Under National Iron Plus Initiative (NIPI), through life cycle approach, age and dose specific Iron & Folic Acid (IFA) supplementation programme is being implemented for the prevention of anaemia among the vulnerable age groups like under-5 children, children of 6 – 10 years of age group, adolescents, pregnant & lactating women and women in reproductive age along with treatment of anaemic children and pregnant mothers at health facilities.
Various trainings are being conducted under NHM to train doctors, nurses and ANMs for essential newborn care, early diagnosis and case management of common ailments of children. These trainings are on Navjaat Shishu, Suraksha Karyakram (NSSK), Integrated Management of Neonatal and Childhood Illnesses (IMNCI), Facility Based Newborn Care (FBNC), Infant and Young Child Feeding practices (IYCF), etc.
Universal Immunization Programme (UIP) covers about 13.5 crore children for vaccination against seven vaccine preventable diseases, through 90 lakh immunization sessions each year.
To sharpen the focus on vulnerable and marginalized populations in underserved areas, 184 High Priority Districts have been identified across the country for implementation of Reproductive Maternal Newborn Child Health+ Adolescent (RMNCH+A) interventions for achieving improved maternal and child health outcomes.
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