24 September 2013

Innovative health surveillance system for women and infants

As a part of Pragya’s initiative to maternal and neonatal child health (read more), Women’s Care Groups (WCG) have been formed in Himalayan villages. A health & nutrition surveillance program for girls and women has been instituted through these groups. Each group uses the program to watch out for health & nutrition risk signs among the girls and women in the village, take necessary precautions or refer for timely clinical care, provide dietary guidance where required, and liaise with government facilities to access necessary supplements, for example, folic acid supplements for pregnant women.

The groups are equipped with necessary instruments, such as Aneamia detection kits (non-invasive) for haemoglobin monitoring, and trained in the surveillance system; the procedure enables a comparison against norms and ranges for BMI, blood sugar, BP, Hemoglobin, etc., set to high-altitude conditions, for adolescent girls and women. They also collect data on food intake and nutritional levels, with a focus on specific high-altitude deficiencies such as iron, vitamin A, and determine cases of Severe Acute Malnutrition (SAM) and Moderate Acute Malnutrition (MAM).

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