Staff Correspondent

It has fallen from 60 per cent to 53 per cent in State: Monappa

  • Workshop on breastfeeding inaugurated
  • State may be selected under Union Government scheme

    DAVANGERE: A.K. Monappa, Director of the Women and Child Development Department, has expressed concern over the decline in the immunisation rate from 60 per cent to 53 per cent in Karnataka. He called upon the Health Department, doctors and others concerned to ensure that children were vaccinated against six communicable diseases compulsorily to achieve total immunisation.

    Presiding over the inauguration of a workshop on breastfeeding here on Thursday, Mr. Monappa wondered whether the officials concerned were overconfident or complacent in this regard and said that it was a cause for concern that the immunisation rate had come down. He said he would send a circular to all officers concerned directing them to provide vaccines to children compulsorily and to improve the immunisation rate by next year. He said Karnataka may be one of the four States selected under the Integrated Child Protection Scheme of the Union Government and the State may get funds under the scheme to protect children from diseases.

    Forty-three newborn babies died out of every 1,000 live births, he said and claimed that the Government had taken steps to bring down the Infant Mortality Rate. The Union Government would focus on brining down the Infant Mortality Rate and Maternal Mortality Rate.

    Deputy Commissioner of Davangere district M.B. Dyaberi said women in urban areas were under the misconception that breastfeeding would harm their physical beauty. It was time that they were educated on the benefits of breastfeeding. Every newborn child had a right to be breastfed for at least one year, he said and called upon mothers not to deprive their babies of mother's milk that would develop the child's immunity. Lakshmi Bhavani, Project Officer, Unicef, said 40 per cent of children below the age of 12 were deprived of nutritious food. She stressed the need to promote infant-friendly hospitals such as the Bapuji Child Health Institute in Davangere. Devamani, planning officer, Health Department, spoke on the occasion.

    Nirmala Kesaree, director of Bapuji Child Health Institute, spoke. Banapurmutt, office-bearer of the State Breast Feeding Network of India, welcomed the gathering.