Menstrual hygiene scheme to be expanded

Changes brought under NRHM for better implementation of schemes

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Sonal Matharu | June 22, 2011



The scheme under the National Rural Health Mission (NRHM) to promote menstrual hygiene amongst the adolescent girls in rural areas will be strengthened and implemented to 156 districts instead of 150 districts in India. This decision was taken at the seventh mission steering meeting of the NRHM under the chairmanship of health minister Ghulam Nabi Azad here on Tuesday. 

“A price of Rs 7.50 per pack of six sanitary napkins was fixed for procurement for which assistance will be provided by the government. Any amount for procurement over and above this norm will be provided through the state budget,” said a press release from the health ministry. Each pack will be sold for Rs six and all the adolescent girls will be covered under the scheme.

Accredited Social Health Activists (ASHA) will also now deliver contraceptives at the homes of the beneficiaries and can charge Re 1 for a pack of three condoms, Re 1.00 for an oral contraceptive pill cycle and Rs 2 for an emergency contraceptive pill from them.

To check malnutrition in infants and pregnant women, the village health and sanitation committee will now be responsible to create awareness about nutritional issue, to carry out surveys on nutritional status in their regions and to include nutritional needs in the village health plan. The committee will also facilitate early detection of malnourished children and women and ensure referrals to them to the nearest nutritional rehabilitation centres. The committee will be renamed as village health, sanitation and nutrition committee (VHSNC).

The district health societies can now reallocate up to 15 percent of the admissible untied funds and rogi kalyan samiti grants to ensure better and proper utilization of funds.

The mission steering group is the highest decision making body of NRHM that takes decisions on the policies and programs under the mission. Rural development and panchayati raj minister Vilasrao Deshmukh, Human Resource Development and Telecom minister Kapil Sibal, Planning Commission Member Sayeeda Hameed, Secretaries of various Government Departments, State Governments Health Secretaries and eminent public health professionals attended the meeting.
 

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