Bihar lauded for child healthcare model

New Delhi, May 8 (IANS) Bihar’s health system has been lauded for its effective child healthcare model that is now being taken up as global best-practice, the annual state of the world’s mothers report said here Tuesday.

The annual flagship report by ‘Save the Children’ has singled out an initiative in Bihar as a global best-practice. The report also rates India as the fourth worst place for mother care among 80 ‘less developed countries’.
“Bihar, one of the poorest in the country, is at the forefront of the battle against vitamin A deficiency, which afflicts up to 62 percent of pre-school age children in rural India,” the report launched here said.
In 2009, Bihar’s vitamin A supplementation programme reached 13.4 million children under 5, protecting 95 percent of children in this age group against the devastating consequences of vitamin A deficiency.
This high coverage came at a time when the national coverage across India was estimated at only 34 percent, the report pointed.
“Over 11,000 health centres and 80,000 ‘anganwadis’ (child development centres) serve as core distribution sites for vitamin A supplements in the state. In addition, more than 3,400 temporary sites were organized to deliver vitamin A within small, isolated communities,” the report noted.