National Birth Defect Awareness Month 2024 Launched

  • Dr. V.K Paul, Member (Health), NITI Aayog, launched the National Birth Defect Awareness Month 2024. 
  • The campaign aims to address childbirth defect issues, focusing on prevention, early identification, and timely management. 
  • The Rashtriya BAL Swasthya Karyakram, which covers half of India’s health, is lauded as a catalyst in child health. 
  • Dr. Paul emphasized the need to address birth defects to lower child mortality, stating that the ratio of birth defects’ mortality is less compared to deaths caused by malaria, pneumonia, and other diseases. 
  • He urged students to opt for Paedetrics in PG to support and strengthen child health, as children are most vulnerable to defects detected at birth. 
  • Dr. Paul also emphasized the importance of pre-pregnancy care, nutritional status, BMI, Thyroid, and UTI for healthy childbirth. 
  • Shri Apurva Chandra, Union Health Secretary, emphasized the importance of early identification of birth defects, especially Club Foot, Hearing impairments, retinal defects, and cleft lips. 
  • The campaign is an effort to observe Birth Defect Day, which is observed on March 3, 2024. 
  • The Ministry of Health & Family Welfare, Government of India, is prioritizing strategies for the identification, prevention, and management of birth defects under Rashtriya BAL Swasthya Karyakram (RBSK). 
  • The program screens children at four different levels: comprehensive newborn screening at Delivery points, bi-annual screening at Anganwadis, and children screening at Government and Government schools once a year.
Posted in Current Affairs.