Rashtriya Bal Swasthya Karyakram
A new health initiative “Rashtriya Bal Swasthya Karyakram” was launched by UPA Government in February 2013. It is technically called ‘Child Health Screening and Early Intervention Services’. This programme has been launched under National Rural Health Mission initiated by the Ministry of Health and Family Welfare, therefore, aims at early detection and management of the 4Ds prevalent in children. These are
- Defects at Birth
- Diseases in Children
- Deficiency conditions
- Developmental Delays including Disabilities.
The initiative is to provide comprehensive healthcare and improve the quality of life of children through early detection of birth defects, diseases, deficiencies, development delays including disability. Rashtriya Bal Swasthya Karyakram aims at screening over 27 Crore children from 0 to 18 years for 4 Ds -Defects at birth, Diseases, Deficiencies and Development Delays including Disabilities. Children diagnosed with illnesses shall receive follow up including surgeries at tertiary level, free-of-cost under NRHM.
- The programme will be extended to cover all districts of the country in a phased manner, with a target to cover 27 crore children.
- Under the scheme, children will be screened for 30 common ailments/health conditions, so that there is the possibility of early medical intervention, in case there is such need.
- Birth defects like Down’s syndrome, congenital cataract, deafness and heart defect, deficiency conditions like anaemia, malnutrition and goitre, developmental delays and disabilities like hearing impairment and vision impairment are among the conditions for which children will be screened under this scheme.
- Mobile health teams will be dedicated to the screening of children, and two AYUSH doctors (one male and one female), nurse and a pharmacist would be available for the service in every block.
- All children in the 0-6 age range enrolled in anganwadis would be screened at least twice a year; all children in government schools and in schools aided by the government would also be regularly screened for the above mentioned conditions.
- Newborn children will also be screened for possible birth defects in health facilities where deliveries take place.
- Children with deficiencies, disabilities or diseases would be referred to higher centres for further investigation and treatment.