India Under Intensified Diarrhoea Control Fortnight

by Jun 19, 2022Health0 comments

India is undergoing at present the Intensified Diarrhoea Control Fortnight (IDCF)-2022.

The IDCF programme, which has been launched by Union Minister of State for Health and Family Welfare Dr Bharati Pravin Pawar, is being implemented from 13th June to 27th June, 2022 in all the States/Union Territories.

The goal of IDCF is to attain zero child deaths due to childhood diarrhoea.

Dr. Pawar says that “as a result of the commendable efforts of the Government of India led by Hon’ble Prime Minister, according to the latest report of SRS-2019, child mortality rate in the country has come down considerably since 2014. This rate has come down from 45 per 1000 live births in 2014 to 35 per 1000 live births in 2019. But even today, diseases related to diarrhoea continue to be a major cause of death in children under the age of five”, she added.

Dr. Pawar highlighted that “dehydration is the biggest cause of diarrhoea in children and other reasons include a change in the baby’s diet to make up for a change in the mother’s diet when breastfeeding; Use of antibiotics by the baby, or use by the mother while breastfeeding, or any type of bacterial or parasitic infection.”

Signifying the importance of prevention and mitigation methods, Dr. Pawar said that “According to the latest survey (NFHS-5) conducted by the Ministry, only 60.6% children under the age of five with diarrhoea were given ORS and only 30.5% were given zinc. This means that there is a lack of awareness among mothers.”

She stressed on more awareness campaigns so that the rate of child mortality due to diarrhoea can be brought down to the minimum level.

Noting the resolve and commitment of the Union Government towards this end, she stated that the Intensive Diarrhoea Control Fortnight (IDCF) has been organized since 2014 with an objective to ‘bring the number of deaths due to diarrhoea in childhood to zero’.

In view of the high prevalence of diarrhoea, this fortnight is organized especially during summer/monsoon so that preventive measures can be taken.

She further said that “a Multi-sectoral participation approach at various governance levels for better impacts like mass awareness generation, rallies, competitions in schools, State and District level launch by leaders etc. will be beneficial in achieving our target.”

Diarrhoea can be prevented through safe drinking water, breastfeeding/appropriate nutrition, hygiene and hygiene measures like hand-washing etc. This has also been emphasized through initiatives like Swachh Bharat Mission. These small behavioural changes have significantly helped India in reducing infant mortality rate, it is said.

IDCF consists of a set of activities to be implemented in an intensified manner for prevention and control of deaths due to dehydration from diarrhoea across all States & UTs.

These activities mainly include intensification of advocacy & awareness generation activities for diarrhoea management, strengthening service provision for diarrhoea case management, establishment of ORS-Zinc corners, prepositioning of ORS by ASHA in households with under-five children and awareness generation activities for hygiene and sanitation.

One of the main activities under the IDCF programme has been the activities by field workers including ASHA, ANM and anganwadi workers. Field workers visit the homes of families with children below five years of age and provide counselling in case of diarrhoea for distribution of zinc and ORS sachets. They also promote sanitation practices, breastfeeding practices and advise on preparation methods of ORS through group meetings among mothers.

It may be noted that since 2014, under the IDCF programme, substantial investments have been made for promoting optimal behaviours for managing childhood diarrhoea. Strategically designed campaigns, comprehensively addressing all components of diarrhoea management at household level, have gained success in reaching out to large numbers of families during the summer and monsoon seasons. The main activities of IDCF include stock taking of ORS and zinc availability at all health facilities during pre monsoon/summer season, intensification of advocacy and awareness generation activities, diarrhoea management service provision, establishing ORS-zinc demonstration sites, prepositioning of ORS by ASHA through home visits.

Would love your thoughts, please comment.x