They account for only 0.95 p.c. of sterilisation cases

Participation of men in family planning in the State continues to remain poor. While 99.05 per cent of the people who underwent sterilisation in 2011-2012 were women, men accounted for a meagre 0.95 per cent.

These figures were revealed during a presentation made by M.C. Krishna, State Deputy Director (Family Welfare) on Karnataka’s performance in implementing family planning programmes at a workshop here on Thursday.

According to the presentation, the number of male sterilisations have come down from 2,942 in 2009 to 1,358 in 2012 (till November). Quoting the 2006-2007 District Level Health Survey (DLHS) conducted once in 10 years by the Union Government, Dr. Krishna said the State recorded 56.7 per cent of female sterilisations and 0.2 per cent of male sterilisations.

However, the number of deaths following sterilisation have come down from 20 in 2009 to 8 in 2012. Similarly, failures recorded in family planning methods have come down from 76 in 2009 to 35 in 2012, Dr. Krishna said.

Senior officials from the Union government’s Family Planning division, who reviewed the performance of 12 States, said although the State’s performance was good, there were certain issues that need to be addressed on a war footing.

Lack of counsellors

S.K. Sikdar, Union Deputy Commissioner (Family Planning Division) told The Hindu that lack of dedicated family planning counsellors was a major challenge in making the family planning programme a success in Karnataka.

“Absence of dedicated family planning counsellors and lack of coordination between the Department of Health and Family Welfare and the State Institute of Health and Family Welfare (the training wing of the department) are affecting Karnataka’s overall performance in implementing family planning programme,” he said.

“Although Karnataka was given a chance to ask for counsellors, no request was made. We are ready to approve the appointment of counsellors if Karnataka makes a proposal in its Project Implementation Plan (PIP) for 2013-2014,” he said.

Pointing out that doctors did not have the time to counsel women on family planning, Dr. Sikdar said: “We were told Karnataka will use the services of counsellors at Integrated Counselling and Testing Centres (ICTC). But as these counsellors are engaged with counselling services for HIV/AIDS patients, involving them in family planning programme may not work out,” Dr. Sikdar explained.

Representatives from 12 States, including Andhra Pradesh, Goa, Gujarat, Kerala, Maharashtra, Tamil Nadu, Daman and Diu, Andaman and Nicobar Islands and Lakshadweep, made presentations at the workshop.

Dr. Sikdar said the proposals made by the States would be considered while approving the final PIPs of those States. Good performing states would be rewarded with a 10 per cent weightage in funding, he added.