Staff Reporter

Plans to cover over 10 lakh children studying in its schools

NEW DELHI: The Municipal Corporation of Delhi has announced the launch of an ambitious anaemia control programme for over 10 lakh children studying in its schools.

At a press conference here over the weekend, MCD Health Committee Chairman V.K. Monga said the main objective of the programme would be to control anaemia by supplementing the iron levels of students and preventing iron deficiency. The civic body’s Health and Education Departments will collaborate with each other to reach out to students for prompt and correct diagnosis of anaemia.

According to Dr. Monga, the civic body’s dual approach will be to provide a nutritious diet to school children through the Mid-Day Meal Scheme and also control anaemia by countering iron deficiency. “The revamped Mid-Day Meal Scheme is likely to reduce the protein-calorie deficit among students. However, the iron deficiency needs still to be tackled in an organised way, and at mass scale.”

Dr. Monga informed that the programme would initially be launched in Shahdara (North), Shahdara (South) and West Zone and would cover over 3 lakh students. The children will also be given de-worming tablets on October 30. After carrying out their haemoglobin estimation, anaemic children will be put on iron and folic acid supplements. There will be an active participation by non-government organisations in the anti-anaemia drive .As part of the programme, children will also be tested for thalassemia and be given nutritional advice from trained teachers.

Dr. Monga said the anti-anaemia programme had become imperative after recent studies indicated that a large majority of children were malnourished and suffering from various degrees of anaemia.