The health and family welfare department has decided to drop graffiti (wall writing), pamphlets and advertisements to raise awareness among the people about health programmes launched under the National Rural Health Mission (NRHM). Instead it would focus on the audio-visual medium for the purpose.
In this regard, the department has planned to amend the information, education and communication (IEC) technique. "Wall writing and pamphlets are passé," said a health department officer and added, "Few people read the wall writing and in rural areas majority do not even understand them. Wall writings and pamphlets hardly catch the imagination of the people."
"We plan to hire personalities from various fields to propagate health programmes in documentary movies. The aim is to hire a face that is popular among the masses and sends the message directly into their mind," the health department officer said.
"The brand ambassador of the Election Commission, Malini Awasthai, a well-known folk singer helped the commission in motivating the youths to exercise their franchise rights. The result was before everyone as the poll percentage broke all previous records," he said. The emphasis of health and family welfare department was also to select a local artiste to educate the masses.
Mission director NRHM, Mukesh Meshram said, "The film bureau of the state information department has been entrusted with the task to prepare a documentary on the health programme. The information department would also prepare the awareness audio. The name of the artiste would be finalised in a few days. The language and culture of the various regions including- Purvanchal, Bundelkhand, Rohilkhand, Awadh and Braj region would be taken care of the in the preparation of the documentary so that the people easily understand the message."
"The health and family welfare department has planned to instal TV sets in hospitals and health centres at the patient waiting area to play the documentary. While patients are waiting for their turn to meet the doctor they could see the documentary. The plan is to organise health awareness shows in villages. The audio will be played in rural melas and public places to pass the message on to the rural folks," he said.
Each year the state government spends over Rs 20 crore on the IEC. The Central Bureau of Investigation probing into the NRHM scam found that IEC fund was misused.
The health department officers told the CBI that they carried out wall writings and distributed pamphlets all over the state to educate the masses. But when grilled, the health officials failed to produce any proof.
It was found that the officers did no wall writing or printings of leaflets and they withdrew the money by presenting fake bills and vouchers.