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  • June 16, 2017
    8:00 AM - 5:00 PM

Association For India’s Development
MIT & Boston Chapter Present

Tackling Healthcare Challenges in Indigenous India

Experiences from the grassroots.

About Dr. Aquinas Edassery:

Dr. Aquinas Edassery is the founder of the non-profit, Swasthya Swaraj, which aims to provide comprehensive community health-care in the tribal district of Kalahandi in OdishaSwasthya Swaraj, founded in 2014 is located in the Thuamul Rampur block of Kalahandi, widely recognized as the most deprived region in India.  

The region has been devastated by endemic Malaria and Tuberculosis, the impact of which is compounded by acute malnutrition and a nonexistent public health care system. The infant mortality rate and the under-five mortality rate of the region are three times higher than the national average.


About Swasthya Swaraj:

Swasthya Swaraj has been operating two clinics in the region, which provide high-quality primary health care, free or affordable therapy, laboratory and emergency facilities. Additionally, they organize camps to deal with specific issues such as leprosy detection, eye checkups, ante-natal care etc. Their health management information system serves as the only source of health statistics of the region. The organization covers 75 villages of a total population of 14,000. They also plan on building community nutrition centers (Gram Poshan Ghars) to tackle the problem of severe acute malnutrition.

To empower the community, Swasthya Swaraj has been training selected village individuals as primary health workers (Swasthya Saathis and Shikhya Saathis), incorporating health-promoting activities in schools, training adolescent girls in healthy practices and also vocations (Tulsi program), and created mass-health programs on the lines of tribal culture (Swasthya Jatras).

(This story has not been edited by BDC staff and is auto-generated from a syndicated feed from IANS.)


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