More than 30 crore children to be covered under National Deworming Day initiative on Thursday
The situation of undernutrition and anaemia, which is linked to soil transmitted helminths (STH), ranges from 40% to 70% in different population groups across IndiaUpdated: Aug 10, 2017 14:22 IST
More than 30 crore children will be covered in the 2nd round of Union health ministry’s National Deworming Programme on Thursday, aimed at reducing worm infestation that hampers the growth of schoolgoers.
The first round was conducted in February this year, and covered 26 crore children with a coverage of 89%.
Of all children to be given albendazole tablets, 7.8 crore children will be from private schools and 3.5 crore will be out of school children that will be reached through anganwadi workers and accredited social health activists (ASHAs) that work at the community level.
Infections due to Soil Transmitted Helminths (STH) or worms cause morbidity by adversely affecting nutritional status; impairing cognitive processes and causing complications that may require surgical intervention.
It also affects a child’s school performance and is a leading cause of absenteeism. The situation of undernutrition and anaemia, which is linked to STH, ranges from 40% to 70% in different population groups across the country.
India launched the programme in 2015, making it one of the largest single-day public health initiatives in the country.
World Health Organisation (WHO) estimates that 220 million children below 14 years of age are at risk of STH infections in India.
National Deworming Day is usually organised twice in a year, covering all the children from 1-19 years of age.
To know the exact worm load, health ministry started a mapping exercise in all states. National Centre for Disease Control (NCDC) was appointed as a nodal agency to conduct nationwide STH mapping. The data shows varied prevalence range from 85% in Tamil Nadu to 12.5 % in Madhya Pradesh during 2015.
Details of STH prevalence in India
*>50% (high prevalence): 14 states
Arunachal Pradesh, Assam, Chhattisgarh, Dadra & Nagar Haveli, Daman & Diu, J&K, Lakhsadweep, Mizoram, Nagaland, Sikkim, Tamil Nadu, Telangana, UP and Uttarakhand
* 20% - 50 % (moderate prevalence): 19 states
First Published: Aug 10, 2017 14:22 IST