'POSHAN Abhiyan' is proving effective in Himachal Pradesh to get rid of the problem of malnutrition. Prime Minister Narendra Modi had launched this campaign from Jhunjhunu District of Rajasthan on March 8, 2018. In the first phase of the campaign Chamba, Hamirpur, Solan and Shimla districts of Himachal Pradesh were selected. In the second phase, Una District was added. Efforts are being made to remove the stigma of dwarfness in the children under the campaign. Child Development Project, Health, Rural Development and Panchayati Raj, Education and other stakeholder departments have to work together, to reduce the rate of dwarfism to 15 percent by 2022. At present, this rate is about 26 percent.
Features of the campaign:
Under the POSHAN Abhiyan, children below the age of 6 have been included. Campaign aims to make every possible effort to eradicate the problem of malnutrition and to undertake effective measures to overcome the problems of underweight among newly born children, anemia and the imbalance of nutrients. Purpose of the campaign is to eradicate the problem of malnutrition in all the states of the country. In 2017-2018, 315 districts of the country were brought under this campaign, whereas in the year of 2018-2019 this campaign was launched in 235 districts. The remaining districts will be covered under this campaign in the year 2019-2020. Under this campaign, Medical Officers are creating awareness about the diagnosis, prevention and treatment of malnutrition, anemia and other nutritional disorders in schools, colleges and other educational institutions.
How to achieve the aim:
Under the 'POSHAN Abhiyan' Aanganwadi workers keep monitoring the health parameters of children through a smart. Smart phones are being given to about 8000 Anganwadi workers of 5 districts to monitor eating habits of the kids. Remaining Ten thousand Anganwadi workers from the seven districts will get smart phones in the month of April next year. Common application software has been designed to execute the mission tasks through a real time inspection system.
This software is operational even offline, through smart phones. Anganwadi workers collect accurate data of children through smart phones. The software records all the health related information including the name of the child, the name of the parents, its weight and height. In order to collect accurate data of the children, equipment like Infanto Meter and Stadio Meter are being provided with the Anganwadi centers.
Anganwadi workers record the weight credentials every month, while the record of height is updated in software every third month. Data collected is made available to the Block, District, State and National level staff through Dashboard on real time basis. After assessing the data, it would be easier to take decisions in the direction to make the campaign successful.
Dr. Saizal said that malnutrition among children was a serious problem and with its redressal it is possible to think of a healthy society. Every family, society and country needs its children both physically and mentally healthy. Therefore, There was a need to start nutrition campaign from home and make it as a public movement. Every person should know about nutrition.
He said Prime Minister's thinking behind the nutrition program was to build a healthy and strong nation. More than half of children were aneamic. Newborn must be fed mother milk within one hour and child should be given milk for at least six months and continue for two years. He said that many of children come in grip of diahrea, pneumonia and weakness. The first 1000 days of life are very important. It is the time of rapit brain development . It is the time of his adult development. The lack of nutrition during these days adversely affects the future of the child. Use of technology, co-ordination of various schemes and public participation are three important ingredients to deal with the problem of malnutrition.