Prevention is better than cure. In this regard, with the assistance of the All India Institute of Hygiene and Public Health, and following W.H.O. guidelines, this Organization has formulated a detailed project of a total Preventive Programme.
This is also one of our prioritized schemes, planning and implementation of which takes shape from the outlook of prevention of Diseases. In fact our rural health workers are groomed to become successful preventive workers and actions taken up by us to implement WHO’s recommendation in the villages are centered around preventive schemes by and large. Under the scheme, following services are taken up:
As per latest recommendation of Universal Immunization Program (UIP) mandatory immunization and booster doses are given to children, in all our village centres without break. When we started the scheme, it had a very low response. Meanwhile due to measures taken up by the Govt. and increased awareness among the masses, immunised babies in villages are much more in number, even though information gathered during home visits by our health workers to the villages of our rural centres revealed that in some villages immunized babies are less in numbers. Owing to distant villages being far from the local health centres and lack of health awareness, a few babies have not been able to go through immunization. In view of this VSSS have laid special stress on Outreach immunization Program. Lady health workers of our Mobile Medical Unit along with Immunization kit visit those distant villages, make villagers aware of health needs and immunize babies those are dropped out and not been immunized. Although there is no quantitative improvement , we have really gained qualitatively. To identify each such baby after house-to- house search and convince their families the need for immunization is most time consuming and a difficult task.
This is also one of our important agenda we are pursuing for many years, which is effected through our Mobile Medical Unit. In each centre, expecting mothers are given medical treatment, advice and free Iron and Folic Acid Tablets, while Babies are also treated and given advice on nutrition. Our Raspur/Kolkata centre is doing well by prioritising on only Mother and Child Care program. As a result cases of Pre natal and Post natal deaths have substantially come down. At present VSSS have laid importance on Reproductive Child Health (RCH) Scheme. Adolescent Girls between 12 and 19 years of age are appropriately treated after pathologically examining their blood. All centres are following this scheme.
It is seen during medical treatment or home visits that many children are suffering from malnutrition. Our scheme for treating these children has been started way back many years. This is well organized through our Mobile Medical Unit. Specially prepared food made with formula supplied from CINI and National Institute of Nutrition, Hyderabad is given to children suffering from malnutrition Grade III and IV. With this measure many children are getting relief from malnutrition.
One of the prioritized areas of functioning for VSSS is family planning. In order to contain population growth through our rural health programs arrangements were made for many health functions, exhibitions and road show. In addition, during the last few year awareness programs are stretched out to all the families in the villages through extensive home visits and results are quite encouraging in all centres. One or more Laparoscopic Ligation Camps have been conducted in all the centres and these have created lot of enthusiasm among the villagers and volunteers . Ligation Camps were organized at Siptai subcentre of Khanpur Centre. In these two occasions we somewhat felt dependant on arrangement provided by Govt. department and thus our efforts were limited. As an alternate arrangement, some provisions were made on temporary basis- Insertion of Copper-T has started in Khanpur centre centre. Our gynecologist inserts Copper-T to willing mothers on pre-appointed day. In addition through our home visits Condoms and Oral Pills are distributed to able couples as a temporary measure.
Although schemes encompassing rural health services adopted by VSSS have made much grounds in the villages, Pollution and Sanitation related matters did not show much progress. Due to this we were much dissatisfied and had approached numerous institutions many times to find out ways and means. With vigorous efforts, we had been able to construct a few low cost toilets. We hope to receive their active cooperation in order to fulfill our obligation in future.
Following WHO and Govt. of Indian guideline VSSS has also taken up RCH as one of the important programmes of preventive and promotive activities. Our Mobile Health Care Unit also takes an important role on this RCH programme and it is getting popular day by day.