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HindustanTimes Fri,01 Aug 2014

Iron dose for malnourished children to be reduced

HT Correspondent, Hindustan Times  Gurgaon, July 25, 2013
First Published: 01:30 IST(25/7/2013) | Last Updated: 01:32 IST(25/7/2013)

With more than 100 children being admitted to the Civil Hospital complaining of side-effects after consuming iron supplement tablets, the health department has assured that paramedics would be deployed in schools to ensure prompt treatment of those falling ill.

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The department has also decided to administer a lower dosage of the iron folic acid tablets to those identified to be malnourished and weak. The move comes after the deputy commissioner of Gurgaon met the competent authorities in this regard on Wednesday.

“It has been decided that paramedical staff will be deployed at all schools where the tablets are being distributed to ensure that the students suffering from side-effects be treated immediately,” said Dr Pushpa Bishnoi, civil surgeon, Gurgaon district.

The National Rural Health Mission (NRHM) of Haryana has also decided that all those girl students who are weak and malnourished would be given a lower dosage of the medicine to ensure minimal side-effect.

“Out of around 1,000 children affected, 90% have reported mild side-effects. We will identify the malnourished and weak ones and give them a lower dose of 50mg. Once they develop tolerance to the supplement, we will give them the normal 100mg dose,” said Dr Rakesh Gupta, mission director, NRHM, department of health and family welfare, Haryana.

On Wednesday, around 14 children from government schools in Sikanderpur and Bhondsi were admitted to the hospital.

Earlier, 31 students suffering from gastritis, vomiting, giddiness, dehydration and abdominal pain were brought in. Hospitals across Haryana have been getting cases of this kind since the re-launch of the Weekly Iron Folic Acid Supplement programme on Monday.

“Curbing the increase in anaemia is the need of the hour. If the programme is followed strictly, the supplement can reduce the number of cases by 15% every year. The programme will not be terminated,” clarified Gupta.


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