Pune: On the occasion of National Deworming Day, around 2.51 crore children in the age-group of 1 to 19 years across the State, will be given deworming
medicine on Friday.
Implemented in coordination with the Health, Women and Child Development and Education Departments, the programme will be carried out through 94,384 Anganwadi Centres, 67,558 government and government-aided schools and 13,967 private-aided schools, in 32 districts and 24 corporations in the State.
Parasital Intestinal Worm Infestation is the major cause of undernutrition and anaemia in children and is responsible for poor scholastic performance and subsequent lower lifetime incomes. Parasitic infections result from poor sanitation and hygiene conditions and are easily transmitted to children.
“National Deworming Day is being implemented in the State since 2015. Since last year, it is a bi-annual activity. This year, we had the first deworming programme in February, which was a successful drive, as we covered around 90 per cent of our target,” Dr Archana Patil, Additional Director, Maharashtra State Family Welfare Bureau, said.
Based on global recommendation and guidelines by the Indian Government, chewable tab Albendazole 400 mg will be administered to the beneficiaries. Half the tablet would be given to the children aged between one and two years. “The tablet is safe and is certified to be used for a mass scale deworming programme. We are also conducting awareness among the children on personal hygiene. ASHA workers will also be helping us by finding the children who don’t go to school and bringing them to the Anganwadi Centres for
deworming,” Dr Patil said.
She further added, “A few children may experience some mild side-effects like nausea, mild abdominal pain, vomiting, diarrhoea, fatigue, etc, but it has no serious consequences and there is absolutely nothing to worry about. In the case of any such emergency, teachers and Anganwadi workers have been trained to take the child to the nearest medical facility.”