New Delhi: United Nation Children Fund (UNICEF) has joined hand with the Union Ministry of Health to check the emerging menace of malnutrition in India. Team UNICEF, after the nod of Government of India, is conducting pan-India survey in the rural and interior part of the country. Deficiency of vitamins and minerals in the children in the age group of 0 to 19 are being ascertained. United Nation Children Fund (UNICEF) has joined hand with the Union Ministry of Health to check the emerging menace of malnutrition in India. Team UNICEF, after the nod of Government of India, is conducting pan-India survey in the rural and interior part of the country. Deficiency of vitamins and minerals in the children in the age group of 0 to 19 are being ascertained.
According to UNICEF, this survey which begins in the month of March is completely funded by India-based British Businessman Mr. Laxmi Mittal’s children Aditya and Megha Mittal. The government has not supported financially. However, in a series of consultations and meetings with the ministry of Health, Social Welfare, water supply and statistic we showed our project to them. They symbolically accepted our proposal.
As many as one lakh twenty thousand children are being covered in the program. “The Project will last till the December 2017 and its findings will be produced before the center Government in the beginning of 2018 so that it helps them in taking effective policy decision for the government”, said Henriette Ahrens, Deputy Representative, UNICEF.
She further said till now there is no such data is available with the Union government regarding the health status of children, let alone making the meticulous plan for them. In the stereotype practice, we are still giving folic acid and iron supplement to the children in the name of Nutrition.
According to Child body, Anemia which is quite common in children is not caused merely because of iron deficiency. Factors like Vitamin A, folic acid, Zinc is also equally important. This survey is being conducted on the international standards where the highest degree of Randomization is being considered.
DR. Deepti Nariani from SRL Ltd said, the parameters that are adopted to check the malnutrition problem in the child for the survey is completely new in the Indian context. We usually check the Hight and weight of a child to check the nutrition but here in our survey we are also measuring the thickness of skin and wrist power of the child.
UNICEF conducted a site visit with Media in the remote location of Rajasthan, nearly 50 kilometers from the Jaipur City. In the survey sociological and economical condition of the children were also being marked in the electronic device. In the state of Rajasthan where Child marriage is one of the big menaces, dealing with the problem Malnutrition is going to be very tough.
UNICEF divided the country into four different parts to conduct a survey. Out of 30 states, as of now, the survey in 12 states is done. DR. Deepti said we have eight members in every team working on ground zero. Each team was given 25 days training before putting into the field. We also faced apathy of locals in the remote area of Bihar and Nagaland. Few people annoyed with the survey team and they were kept hostage for few hours. In Nagaland, teams were warned if they were seen in the area again, they would face dire consequences.