by The Welthi Bureau | 18 NOV 2017
Healthcare leaders in Telangana joined together at Niloufer Hospital to pledge their support to improve health outcomes for babies born preterm. Premature birth and low birth weight is a leading cause of infant mortality in India.
At Niloufer Hospital today, Dr. K Manohar, CEO of the Aarogyasri Health Care Trust, and Dr. Ramesh Reddy, Director Medical Education of the Government of Telangana, Dr. Srinivasa Gadala, CPO, National Health Mission, joined the Medical Superintendent of Niloufer, Dr. Murali Krishna, and other key staff from the hospital, the Head of the Neonatal Intensive Care Unit of Fernandez Hospital, and representatives from ACCESS Health International, UNICEF, and the National Neonatology Forum to place their handprints on a white sheet to symbolize their promise to ensure that preterm babies are given access key interventions that can help ensure their survival.
Speaking on the occasion Dr Manohar said, this program is the need of the hour. We are struggling hard to improve the parameters of health care. Already Telangana state reduced MMR in comparison to National standard, that's one good achievement and are matching the national standard. Coming to IMR and NMR, I am sure it will come down, thanks to the introduction of KCR kits, you are going to map the high risk pregnancies right from day one, this kit helps to map the women from day one so that we can provide proper antinatal care, we can avoid malnutrition, so that we can improve anaemia and all the pre-disposing factors. If you take the lead from this day onwards and take pledge to create awareness about the problem to make things easy for prevention. Niloufer has made tremendous success, thanks to all the successive Superintendents and the present dynamic DME, there is a good future for it. In the past, the work at this hospital was part of the text books, it had references for medical students, let us again bring back that glory. In the coming years, we are all responsible for improving the parameters of healthcare in this state, let us all work towards it. As CEO of Arogyasri recently I convened a mmeting of all pediatricians to discuss how best we can improve the services, they brought forward few problems which can be easily dealt by the concerned Superintendents. This meeting was to see how best we can collectively improve things. You have revolving fund always to improve the facilities in the department. I will release the Revolving Fund immediately so that the services will improve in the department. We will use the money more judiciously to develop the facilities.
Dr. Ramesh Reddy said, Niloufer is the Mecca of paediatric care, it not only caters to patints from remote areas of our state but also peripheral areas of neighbouring states. The work load is tremendous, anyday we have 250 to 300 babies coming, significant number of these are pre mature babies. Generally smaller hospitals especially the private ones discard such patients and are referred to Niloufer and many such babies survive here, that is the beauty of Niloufer. The new thrust of Telangana is on Health care, we are introducing several infrastructural changes, especially in the mother and child care area, we are bringing state-of -the art infrastructure, Intensive care units. This kind of treatment is unaffodable for most and we will serve the poorest of the poor wih them. We are in the process of getting new monitors, ventilators and additional specialists and staff. This neo natal centre should become a centre of excellence, reduce infant mortality and surpass Kerala which has a single digit infant mortality. we should minimise the long term complications in such children and babies should come out of critical condition. I am confident that Niloufer will excel in the care of premature babies.
Telangana has become a leader in providing quality care to newborns in India. Recently, the Ministry of Health and Family Welfare has been ranked Telangana second in the country in terms of quality of care in Special Newborn Care Units. For the country overall, while there have been recent declines in maternal and neonatal mortality too many babies continue to die of complications due to premature birth. Of the 27 million babies born in India annually, approximately 13 percent (3.5 million) are born preterm and more than one quarter (7.6 million) have low birthweight. Being born prematurely or with a low birthweight significantly increases the risk of dying in the days immediately following birth.
Participants at today’s events pledged to implement a series of key interventions that can improve survival rates of preterm babies:
Providing antenatal corticosteroids to mothers at risk of preterm delivery that have been proven to reduce morbidity and mortality for newborns
Skin to skin contact, called Kangaroo Mother Care, between babies and their mothers, fathers, grandmothers or other loved ones
Respiratory support to help the lungs of preterm babies grow strong, including continuous positive airway pressure, caffeine, surfectants, and other tools
Early and exclusive breastfeeding
Dr.Himabindu Singh, Head of the Department of Neonatology at Niloufer Hospital mentioned that Niloufer Hospital has been actively adopting low cost solutions to help preterm births.
Dr Ajitkumar Sudke, Director of Quality and Process Improvement at ACCESS Health International added, “We know the interventions that can save the lives of preterm babies. The challenge now is to make sure frontline healthcare workers have the support they need to identify the main causes of newborn death in their own hospitals and to apply the proven interventions that can save newborn lives. Teaching healthcare workers about the process of quality improvement is one of the best ways to provide support.” ACCESS Health has been implementing a quality improvement program at Niloufer and other hospitals affiliated with the Aarogyasri Health Care Trust called Safe Care, Saving Lives.
Dr. Srinivas Murki, Head of Neonatal Intensive Care Unit at Fernandez Hospital both highlighted the importance of improving the quality of care for newborns and finding simple, small measures through a quality improvement process to significantly advance health outcomes for preterm babies. Other honorary guests speaking at the event includedDr. Sanjeev Upadhyaya, Health Specialist, UNICEF Hyderabad, Dr. M Surendranath, Secretary, National Neonatology Forum, Telangana State Chapter, and Dr. Kalyan Srinivas, Associate Professor, Department of Neonatology, Niloufer Hospital.
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