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Bihar State PCS

  • 19 Feb 2024
  • 5 min read
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Ayush Regional Review Meeting

Why in News?

Union Minister of Ayush and Ports, Shipping, and Waterways, Sarbananda Sonowal, stressed the importance of holistic healthcare on a global scale during Regional Review Meeting of six states: Bihar, Chhattisgarh, Jharkhand, Madhya Pradesh, Odisha, and Uttar Pradesh, which was arranged by the Ministry of Ayush in Patna, Bihar.

Key Points

  • The Ministry of Ayush is actively supporting state and union territory governments in implementing various initiatives outlined in their State Annual Action Plans (SAAPs) under the Centrally Sponsored Scheme of the National Ayush Mission (NAM).
    • With the vision of providing Ayush healthcare services across the country, the NAM aims to strengthen and enhance Ayush healthcare facilities, empowering the public with informed choices.
  • The Ministry of Ayush has allocated Rs 1712.54 Crores to seven states—Bihar, Chhattisgarh, Jharkhand, Madhya Pradesh, Odisha, Uttar Pradesh, and West Bengal—under the NAM.
    • It also supported the establishment of 58 Integrated Ayush hospitals, with 14 already operational.
    • Out of the planned 12,500 Ayush Health and Wellness Centres (AHWCs), 4235 have been supported, with 3439 already functional in these states.
  • The states were urged to accelerate the construction of Ayush Educational Institutes and integrated Ayush hospitals.
  • The importance of implementing Ayush public health programs outlined in the NAM guidelines, focusing on various interventions for a holistic approach to health was highlighted.
  • States like Bihar, Uttar Pradesh, and Chhattisgarh were specifically encouraged to undertake the National Program on Ayush for Morbidity Management and Disability Prevention (MMDP) of Lymphatic Filariasis.

National Ayush Mission (NAM)

  • It was launched in September 2014 by the Department of AYUSH under the Ministry of Health and Family Welfare, during the 12th Plan for implementation through States/UTs.
    • Now, it is implemented by the Ministry of Ayush.
  • The scheme involves expansion of the AYUSH sector to promote holistic health of Indians.
  • The Mission addresses the gaps in health services through supporting the efforts of State/UT Governments for providing AYUSH health services/education in the country, particularly in vulnerable and far-flung areas.

Lymphatic Filariasis (LF)

  • LF, commonly known as elephantiasis and is considered as a Neglected Tropical Disease (NTD). It is the second most disabling disease after mental health.
  • It impairs the lymphatic system and can lead to the abnormal enlargement of body parts, causing pain, severe disability and social stigma.
    • The lymphatic system is a network of vessels and specialized tissues that are essential to maintaining the overall fluid balance and health of organs and limbs and, importantly, are a major component of the body’s immune defense system.
  • Lymphatic filariasis is a vector-borne disease, caused by infection with parasites classified as nematodes (roundworms) of the family Filarioidea. There are 3 types of thread-like filarial worms which causes lymphatic filariasis:
    • Wuchereria Bancrofti is responsible for 90% of the cases.
    • Brugia Malayi causes most of the remainder of the cases.
    • Brugia Timori also causes the disease.
  • Drug Treatment:
    • The World Health Organization (WHO) recommends three drug treatments to accelerate the global elimination of lymphatic filariasis.
      • The treatment, known as IDA, involves a combination of ivermectin, diethylcarbamazine citrate and albendazole.
      • The plan is to administer these drugs for two consecutive years. The life of the adult worm is hardly four years, so it would die a natural death without causing any harm to the person.
  • Scenario in India:
    • Lymphatic filariasis poses a grave threat to India. An estimated 650 million Indians across 21 states and union territories are at risk of lymphatic filariasis.
    • Over 40% of worldwide cases are found in India.
    • The government launched the Accelerated Plan for Elimination of Lymphatic Filariasis (APELF) in 2018, and as part of intensifying efforts towards elimination, later rolled out IDA treatment (triple drug therapy) in a phased manner.

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