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Measures Taken to Reduce Infant Mortality Rate
Jan 11, 2015

India is likely to achieve Milleneum Development Goals (MDG) target of under-5 mortality Rate of 42 per 1000 live births by 2015.  In 2012, under-5 mortality rate in India is 52 and it may reach 42 by 2015 if the current trend of annual decline of 6.8 percent continues.

Under the National Health Mission, the following key interventions are being implemented to bring down the mortality rate of children across all the States of the country:

  1. Promotion of Institutional Delivery through Janani Suraksha Yojana (JSY): Promoting Institutional Delivery by skilled birth attendant is key to reducing both maternal and neonatal mortality.

  2. Emphasis on facility based new-born care at different levels to reduce Child Mortality: Setting up of facilities for care of sick new-borns such as Special New Born Care Units (SNCUs), New Born Stabilization Units (NBSUs) and New Born Care Corners (NBCCs) at different levels is a thrust area under NHM.

  3. Capacity Building of Health Care Providers: Various trainings are being conducted under NHM to train doctors, nurses and ANMs for early diagnosis and case management of common ailments of children and care of mother during pregnancy and delivery. These trainings are on Integrated Management of Neonatal and Childhood Illnesses (IMNCI), Navjaat Shishu Suraksha Karyakram (NSSK), Skilled Birth Attendance (SBA), Life Saving Anaesthesia Skills (LSAS), Comprehensive Emergency Obstetric Care (CEmOC), Basic Emergency Obstetric Care (BEmOC), etc.

  4. Management of Malnutrition: Nutritional Rehabilitation Centres (NRCs) have been established for management of severe acute malnutrition.

  5. Appropriate Infant and Young Child Feeding (IYCF) 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.

  6. Universal Immunization Programme (UIP): Vaccination protects children against many life threatening diseases such as Tuberculosis, Diphtheria, Pertussis, Polio, Tetanus, Hepatitis B and Measles. Infants are thus immunized against seven vaccine preventable diseases every year. The Government of India supports the vaccine programme by supply of vaccines and syringes, Cold chain equipment and provision of operational costs.

  7. Janani Shishu Suraksha Karyakaram (JSSK): 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, blood and diet, besides free transport from home to institution, between facilities in case of a referral and drop back home. Similar entitlements have been put in place for all sick infants accessing public health institutions for treatment till one year of age.

  8. Home Based New Born Care (HBNC): Home based new-born care through ASHAs has been initiated by providing incentive of Rs. 250. The purpose of Home Based New Born Care is to improve new born practices at the community level and early detection and referral of sick new born babies.

  9. Mother and Child Tracking System (MCTS): 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 new born babies so that provision of regular and complete services to them can be ensured.


Government of India is providing vaccination against measles as Measles containing vaccine administered at 9-12 months of age and second dose at 16-24 months. Second dose of measles vaccination has been introduced w.e.f. year 2010, as per the recommendation made by National Technical Advisory Group on Immunization (NTAGI).

  • To target universal immunization, following activities are being carried out:

  • Special Immunization Weeks (SIW) is conducted every year in areas with pockets of low immunization coverage.

  • Government of India has introduced performance based incentives for Accredited Social Health Activist (ASHA) for social mobilization to increase immunization coverage.

  • Due list of beneficiaries are prepared for every session and this list is used for mobilization of children.

  • Information Education and Communication (IEC) and Inter Personal Communication (IPC) activities for increasing community participation


The National Technical Advisory Group on Immunization (NTAGI) has recommended for introduction of Rotavirus vaccine in a phased manner.   The approval process by Mission Steering Group has been initiated for introduction of Rotavirus vaccine under Universal Immunisation Programme. The strategy would be to give 3 doses of Rotavirus vaccine along with DPT 1st, 2nd and 3rd dose.

 


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