South 24 Parana’s district administration celebrated the success of ANANDI today by rewarding blocks to recognize their contribution and commitment towards improving the situation of institutional delivery in the district.
ANANDI is an initiative to promote institutional delivery and Routine Immunization under the Sundarini Project for overall development of South 24 Parganas, with special focus on the riverine and hard-to-reach areas. Within a span of one and half years, ANANDI has led to remarkable results in the district, where institutional delivery rate has reached nearly 88%from a mere 65%.,
The results have been achieved through a multipronged approach of tracking and mobilization of each and every pregnant woman, as well as improving service sat the delivery points and strengthening the referral transport system. Establishment of maternity waiting huts at riverine areas, improving quality of delivery services and active involvement of different stakeholders have also contributed to this achievement.
“In 2014-15, the institutional delivery in the district was around 63 % and as per reported data, institutional delivery now stands at 88%, a quantum jumpin a short span of just 18 months. Routine immunization coverage has also increased from 62% (Aug 2014-July 2015) to 90% (Dec 2016) as per reported data. While Health sector has implemented the strategies, district administration and other partners stakeholders including UNICEF have provided technical support.ltgoes without saying that tremendous effort from staff of delivery points as well as frontline workers has made this change possible,” shared Dr. P.B.Salim, District Magistrate, South 24 Parganas district.
Three best-performing blocks were rewarded with certificates and plaques during today’s award ceremony with an aim to recognize their commitments and efforts and celebrate the local heroes who have made this success possible. Dr. Sikha Adhikari, State Family Welfare Officer & Joint Director Health Services, Department of Health was also present at the award ceremony along with the UNICEF team.
Dr. Kaninika Mitra, UNICEF Health Specialist, who was present at the event stated, “For institutional delivery, the focus is now to sustain the gains and improving the quality of maternal and newborn care services by further strengthening of the system. For Routine Immunization, the focus is now to focus the remaining pockets and left-out children., especially in urban slums and ensuring full immunization of each and every child. Being a RMNCHA High Priority District, this is a huge achievement and has the potential to be the turning point in overall development of Health System in the district.”
Following the huge success of Anandi in South 24 Parganas, the state has declared it as a model project and has advised all districts, especially those with low coverage of institutional delivery to scale-up the strategies of Anandi initiative in their respective districts. Malda and Uttar Dinajpur districts have already started the scale-up process.