GUWAHATI, Aug 9 - The Kamrup (Metro) district administration has set a target to administer deworming tablets to at least 1.9 lakh children and teenagers in the age group of one to 19 years on August 10, which will be observed as the National Deworming Day (NDD).
Dr Ganesh Saikia, Joint Director of Health Services, said today that with an aim to intensify efforts towards control of soil-transmitted helminths (STH) infection among children in the country, the Union Ministry of Health and Family Welfare has decided to observe NDD on August 10 nationwide.
NDD will be followed by a mop-up day (MUD) on August 17 with the intent of deworming children who miss the dose tomorrow.
Dr Saikia said that the District Health Society has jointly planned the programme in coordination with the education department, the social welfare department and the Public Health & Engineering (PHE) department to administer deworming tablets to children of all schools and anganwadi centres as well as children who are out of schools and anganwadis.
“With this purpose, a District Coordination Committee meeting, along with a workshop with the line departments’ officials and orientation of school teachers and frontline workers has been conducted. Many private schools in the district also participated in the orientation meeting for NDD to deworm their respective school children,” he said.
He said that the objective of NDD is to deworm all pre-school and school-age children between the ages of one to 19 years through the platform of schools and anganwadi centres in order to improve their overall health, nutritional status, access to education and quality of life.
“The school students will be given deworming tablets by the school teachers, while at the anganwadi centres the anganwadi workers will administer deworming tablets to the children with the help of ASHAs and ANMs. Those children who are not enrolled in schools and anganwadi centres will be tracked by the ASHAs and ANMs and will be given deworming tablets on August 10 and August 17,” he said.
“To combat any unseen emergencies, a total of ten rapid medical response teams have been formed in the district. During NDD on August 10 and during MUP on August 17, the monitoring teams will undertake field visits to support and supervise the deworming programme,” he said.
Dr Saikia said the WHO has estimated that 241 million children between the ages of one and 19 years are at risk of parasitic intestinal worms in India, known as soil-transmitted helminths (STH).
“These children represent approximately 68 per cent of all the children in this age-group and approximately 28 per cent of the number of children estimated to be at risk of STH infections globally,” he said.