Press Releases

Monday, July 28, 2014

Press Release No. 268/14


Shillong, July 28, 2014: Diarrhoea is one of the diseases which have taken hundreds of thousands of lives of infants and children across the globe. As per statistics, 1.5 billion cases of diarrhoea in under-five children were recorded and of these, 2.5 million lost their lives with India contributing to 11per cent deaths. Inspite of numerous awareness programmes taken up by the Government of India, the death from this disease still remain a cause for concern. Therefore, seeing the urgent need to solve this problem, the Government of India through the National Rural Health Mission has directed that all States and Union Territories in the country observed an Intensified Diarrhoea Control Fortnight, IDCF-2014 from today, the 28 July, 2014 to 8 August, 2014 with an ultimate aim of ‘zero child deaths due to childhood diarrhoea’.

In the State of Meghalaya, the IDCF-2014 is being observed in all the District Headquarters and Sub-Divisions. In the State capital, the Directorate of Health Services (MCH and FW) and National Health Mission, Meghalaya organized the programme at Ganesh Das Hospital, Shillong wherein the Meghalaya Minister of Health and Family Welfare, etc., Mr. A L Hek was the Chief Guest. This programme is a set of activities to be implemented in an intensified manner to prevent deaths due to childhood diarrhoea.

Dr. Y Shabong, Pediatrician, Ganesh Das Hospital, has informed that in Meghalaya alone, 92000 cases of diarrhoea in children under five has been recorded in the year 2013 and 14 and most of these cases was recorded in West Khasi Hills, East Jaintia Hills and West Jaintia Hills. She said that diarrhoea is one of the main causes which have impacted the Infant Mortality Rate (IMR) in the State which needs to be addressed intensively. Dr. Shabong also demonstrates to the mothers on how to use Oral Rehydration Solution (ORS) and administering of Zinc tablets to the affected children. She also stressed on the importance of sanitation and hygiene for control of this disease.

Mr. A L Hek, in his inaugural speech, said that the Government of Meghalaya has taken various initiatives to provide the citizens with an effective and timely health delivery system. He said that reduction of childhood mortality is one of the prime goals of National Health Mission and Millenium Development Goals, so special campaign to prevent and control diarrhoeal mortality, which is also one of the causes of childhood deaths, is undertaken on a large scale. He said that the Health Department is making special efforts to bring the health system closer to the people especially in the rural areas and it is the desire of the Government that the people take full opportunity of the health system being offered. He hoped that this programme will help the people understand the significance of timely treatment for good health and also be aware of the importance of health and sanitation. He also stressed on community participation so that this disease can be eradicated from the State and the country.

IDCF Week 1 will focus on awareness generation and advocacy on use of ORS and Zinc during diarrhea, home visit by ASHAs to all families with under five children, establishment of ORS Zinc corners and hand washing demonstration in schools. Week 2 will be observed as Infant and Young Child Feeding (IYCF) Practices for awareness generation on correct child feeding practices, creating awareness on problem of under nutrition, detection and treatment of under nutrition and providing effective IYCF counseling services.

A similar programme for the East Khasi Hills District was also launched today by Mr. K. C. Khyriem, Parliamentary Secretary, Arts and Culture department at Mawphlang Public Health Centre, Mawphlang in the presence of the local MDC Mr. L. Blah, Dr. R. Lamare, District Medical and Health Officer, East Khasi Hills, District, Dr. S. S. Dohling, Additional District Medical and Health Officer, Dr. E. G. Tariang, Sr. Medical and Health Officer, incharge Mawphlang PHC, ASHAs and villagers of Mawphlang and surround villages.

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