Merinews, 5th May, 2008
k.Sudhakar Patnaik, 05 May 2008, Monday
CHIEF MINISTER Navin Patnaik’s progress policies in health care, especially in case of pregnant mothers are being sabotaged by subordinate state administration. As many as 800 women died in Koraput, Kalahandi and Bolangir tribal districts in the last 30 months, since late 2005 to September, 2007. According to a survey conducted by White Ribbon Alliance (WRA), 57 per cent of these 800 deceased, died within a week of delivery.
The disturbing figures came to light last week when ’Delivery Now’, a global advocacy drive was launched for 12 districts of the state. The survey was carried out by WRA, Orissa. Former director of state health service, Siba Mahapatra, said 40 mothers died due to insecure pregnancy, 64 during delivery and 696 died after delivering a child.
“The main reason behind such a high number of deaths is that we have failed to get the best out of service provided by Ancillary Nursing Midwifes (ANMs) in rural set-up, as 60 per cent of ANMs have not been able to provide the health care needed for mothers”, WRA, Orissa president, Shaktidhan Sahoo said. The government health sector too lags behind in putting adequate infrastructure in place to take care of mothers.
The Janani Surkshya Yojana scheme is a noble one, which itself proves the Patnaik’s policy in health care to avoid house delivery. The number of Anganwadi centres opened in remote areas meant for emergency feeding programme for poor children and pregnant mothers for reduction of malnutrition, child mortality and deaths of mothers. The Anganwadi workers are supposed to register the name of pregnant women in the nearest health centres so that the women get iron tablets, nutritious food and after getting information the ANM gives Tetanus Toxide injections.
It is mandatory that after getting the labour pain the mothers be admitted in a hospital. She will be paid about rupees 1500 so that she can take care of herself and her kid. Unfortunately all these welfare schemes manned by the government officials instead of implementing the scheme sell the commodities in the name of pregnant women at lifting point.
The Kaberibadi and Pedalada Grama Panchayats under Bandhugaon block and Kalimela block are few places where the implementing agency manipulates the records and hides the pregnant mother’s death.
In most of the cases home delivery in remote tribal villages became common due to lack of government programmes, lack of communication facilities and deep rooted corruption while implementing the schemes by such agencies are responsible for the tragedies.
In urban areas, many mothers who have institutional delivery and they would get rupees 1000 after delivery, but there is not enough space available in hospitals where they are kept under observation for few more days after the delivery.
The situation continues to be grim as the state loses eight or nine mothers each day, WRA reveals. Its blame goes to health minister, secretary, health and family planning.