Initiatives taken by the Community Health department of the Hospital for women’s health
Women, a key member of the family are a neglected lot in the Konkan region. It is assumed by all that her active life ends around the age of 40 years. Before that, series of pregnancies delivering daughters while trying to meet the social pressure of having a son takes a heavy physical & mental toll on the women. This becomes apparent as they approach the age of 40 years and all the medical problems begin. Some times in the end, their condition becomes worse than a neglected household article. She is malnourished & ultimately she gives birth to malnourished children. This kind of life resulting from some wrong age-old beliefs& superstitions, poverty, lack of self-belief & poor work-ethic leads to the growth of negative thinking.
The hospital is the friend in need for these neglected & marginalised women. Every 3 months, it holds a camp for these women who are over 40 years of age. They are subjected to a number of medical tests including blood test, Sonography, Mammography etc. and treatments administered wherever needed. Later, these women are dropped at their residence in hospital vehicle. This entire exercise is free of cost. This is an effort to change the negative thinking that death is cheaper than spending money for medical treatment.
Mission to eradicate Malnutrition
Health Check-up camp conducted every month at Hospital & distribution of medicines
Hospital has taken up the task to improve health of all malnourished children born to a malnourished mother. Every week in every village near Dervan, women & their children are assembled at the village toy-school (“Anganwadi”) with the help of the toy-school teacher. The hospital team reaches there with all the necessary equipment and medicines. All the women & their children undergo medical examination & their weight and height are recorded along with any specific medical condition. Where further treatment is needed patients are transported to the hospital using hospital ambulance.
Malnutrition is a disease and the simplest treatment for it is nutritious food. With this thinking, the hospital has developed a “Ladoo” (local delicacy) based on a nutritious recipe involving nutritious grains, almonds, honey, milk powder, jaggery and some natural herbs. This nutritious preparation is regularly distributed free of cost to the women & their children. To observe the effects of nutritious food distributed, every month weight & height of the recipients is measured. Women are taught to prepare range of nutritious food-items at home from easily available ingredients.
Till date almost 6717 toy-schools in the 3 districtsof Ratnagiri, Sindhudurg and Satara have been visited leading to the medical examination of almost 30,240 children.
“Ladoo” (A nutritious delicacy to fight malnutrition)
The Konkan region is characterised by mountainous terrain with poor soil quality, hot & humid weather and poverty. All this leads to widespread malnutrition among the population. To build a strong & capable society it is necessary to break this cycle of malnutrition. With this objective in mind the organisation decided to distribute nutritious diet and thus these “Ladoos” were prepared.
These “Ladoos” (A local delicacy) now known for their distinct taste & nutrition value are prepared from ground nuts,cereals,jiggery,ragi,Ayurvedic Medicines like “Ashwgandha”, “Shatavari”, “Pimpli”, “Sunth”, “Ahliv” & containing other ingredients like “Shingada”, Cashewnuts, dried dates, “Keshar” , Poha etc.
Children from ICDS centres, pregnant women & adolescent girls are distributed these “Ladoos” every week considering 2-3 “Ladoos” per day per person. For those whom even two square meals a day is a major challenge, these “Ladoos” provide a major support for diet.
These “Ladoos” contain 5% Iron, 84% Calcium, 68% Carbohydrates & 10% Proteins and other vitamins. Regular consumption of these has shown marked improvements in Haemoglobin content in blood & weight for the children & women. Such positive changes in pregnant women always help in delivering a healthy child. A test report from the Maharashtra State Public Health Laboratory has indicated that this “Ladoo” contains about 410 Kcal energy, which proves its importance.
The hospital has been distributing these “Ladoos” to thousands of malnourished persons since the year 2000 in its effort to improve the health of the whole society.