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Daily Category  (Health)

Ayushman Sahakar Scheme

Context:

Ministry of Agriculture & Farmers' Welfare has launched AYUSHMAN SAHAKAR.

  • Objective: To assist cooperatives to play an important role in the creation of healthcare infrastructure in the country.
  • The scheme is formulated by the National Cooperative Development Corporation (NCDC).
  • The scheme covers establishment, modernization, expansion, repairs, renovation of hospital and healthcare and education infrastructure.

Features of the scheme:

  • NCDC would extend term loans to prospective cooperatives to the tune of Rs.10,000 crore in the coming years.
  • Any Cooperative Society with a suitable provision in its bylaws to undertake healthcare-related activities would be able to access the NCDC fund.
  • NCDC assistance will flow either through the State Governments/ UT Administrations or directly to the eligible cooperatives.
  • The scheme also provides working capital and margin money to meet operational requirements.
  • The scheme also provides interest subvention of 1% to women majority cooperatives.

Significance:

  • The scheme mainly focuses on the National Health Policy, 2017, covering the health systems in all their dimensions- investments in health, organization of healthcare services, access to technologies, development of human resources etc.
  • It is in line with the National Digital Health Mission and would bring transformation in rural areas.
  • It has comprehensive approach-hospitals, healthcare, medical education, nursing education, paramedical education, health insurance, and holistic health systems such as AYUSH.
  • There are about 52 hospitals across the country run by cooperatives. They have a cumulative bed strength of more than 5,000. The scheme would give a boost to the provision of healthcare services by cooperatives.
  • Cooperatives have a strong presence in rural areas, thus, cooperatives utilizing the scheme would revolutionize the way healthcare delivery takes place in rural areas.

National Cooperative Development Corporation (NCDC):

  • It was set up in 1963 under an Act of Parliament for the promotion and development of cooperatives.
  • It functions under the Ministry of Agriculture and Farmers Welfare.
  • Sahakar Cooptube NCDC Channel (Youth-focused), Sahakar Mitra (Internship Programme) are the other initiatives of NCDC.

Cooperatives:

  • International Labour Organisation (ILO) defines cooperative as an autonomous association of persons united voluntarily to meet their common economic, social, and cultural needs and aspirations through a jointly-owned and democratically-controlled enterprise.
  • Provisions of Indian Constitution:
    • 97th Amendment of Indian constitution added Part IXB right after Part IXA (Municipals) regarding the cooperatives working in India.
    • The word “cooperatives” was added after “unions and associations” in Article 19(1)(c) under Part III of the Constitution.

Source: PIB

Global Tuberculosis Report

Context:

According to the Global Tuberculosis Report 2020, the COVID-19 pandemic, combined with impacts on care-seeking behavior, threatens to reverse the recent progress in reducing the global burden of tuberculosis (TB) disease.

Tuberculosis:

  • It is caused by bacteria (Mycobacterium tuberculosis) that mainly affect the lungs.
  • It spread from person to person when people with TB cough, sneeze or spit, they propel the TB germs into the air.
  • Tuberculosis is treated with a standard 6-month course of 4 antimicrobial drugs that are provided with information, supervision, and support to the patient by a health worker or trained volunteer.

Key foundings:

  • The evidence from several high TB burden countries of large reductions in the monthly number of people with TB being detected and officially reported in 2020 is available.
  • India accounts for 26% of TB cases in the world and the TB notifications during the period January-June 2020 in India fell by 25% compared to the same period in 2019.
  • The TB notifications in India in February 2020 increased compared with January but then reduced sharply in April to reach less than 40% of the January figure before increasing to reach about 75% of the January figure in the month of June.
  • The dip in TB notifications has not been very sharp in India and the recovery after the dip has been more in India than Indonesia, the Philippines, and South Africa.
  • In India, notifications of people newly diagnosed with TB increased by 74% from 1.2 million to 2.2 million between 2013 and 2019.
  • In the case of India, there is a gap in the number of people newly diagnosed and reported due to a combination of underreporting of people diagnosed with TB and under-diagnosis.

Global Tuberculosis Report:

  • The World Health Organization (WHO) has published a global TB report every year since 1997.
  • The purpose of the report is to provide a comprehensive and up-to-date assessment of the status of the TB epidemic.
  • The report is based primarily on data gathered by the World Health Organization (WHO) in annual rounds of data collection.

Govt initiatives:

  • The Nikshay Ecosystem: It is the National TB information system which is a one-stop solution to manage information of patients and monitor program activity and performance throughout the country.
  • Nikshay Poshan Yojana (NPY): It aimed at providing financial support to TB patients for their nutrition.
  • The Saksham Project: It is a project of the Tata Institute of Social Sciences (TISS) that has been providing psycho-social counseling to DR-TB patients.

Source: The Hindu

Har Ghar Jal State

Context:

Goa has become the first 'Har Ghar Jal' State in the country. The state successfully provides 100% Functional Household Tap Connections in the rural areas covering 2.30 lakh rural households.

  • Now, all rural homes in the State have a tap water supply. 

Details:

  • The state has utilized the benefits of the Jal Jeevan Mission (JJM) which aims to improve the quality of life and bring 'ease-of-living' to rural communities.
  • The two districts of Goa I .e.North Goa and South Goa are fully saturated with assured piped water supply through tap connections.
  • To strengthen the water testing facilities, the State is in process of getting 14 water quality testing laboratories NABL accredited.  
  • Jal Jeevan Mission mandates training 5 persons in the very village especially women to be trained in using Field Test Kits, so that water can be tested in the villages.

Goa's Annual Action Plan:

  • Objective: To provide 100% Functional Household Tap Connections (FHTCs) in rural areas by 2021.
  • Accordingly, fund allocation from the Union to Goa in 2020-21 has been increased to Rs. 12.40 Crore for the plan.
  • The convergence of Schemes: The State explored through the convergence of various programs like the Mahatma Gandhi National Rural Employment Guarantee Act (MGNREGA), Swachh Bharat Mission (Grameen), 15th Finance Commission for rural local bodies, etc. for the strengthening of drinking water sources, water supply, greywater (any domestic wastewater excluding sewage) treatment & re-use and operation & maintenance.

Jal Jeevan Mission:

  • It envisages the supply of 55 liters of water per person per day to every rural household through Functional Household Tap Connections by 2024.
    • It aims to integrate demand and supply-side management of water at the local level.
  • Funding Pattern: 90:10 for Himalayan and North-Eastern States, 50:50 for other states, and 100% for Union Territories.
  • The total allocation to the scheme is over ?3 lakh crore.
  • Creation of local infrastructure for source sustainability measures as mandatory elements, like rainwater harvesting, groundwater recharge and management of household wastewater for reuse, would be undertaken in convergence with other government programmes/schemes.
  • The key components of the mission: A community approach to water, Education, and Communication, a Jan Andolan for water, thereby making it everyone’s priority.

Source: PIB

Global Hunger Index 2020

Context:

According to the Global Hunger Index 2020, India has the highest prevalence of wasted children under five years in the world.

Key findings:

  • India ranks 94 out of 107 countries in the Index, lower than her neighbors such as Bangladesh (75) and Pakistan (88).
  • In the region of the south, east, and south-eastern Asia, the only countries which fare worse than India are Timor-Leste, Afghanistan, and North Korea.
    • Child stunting: Although it is still in the poorest category, however, child stunting has actually improved significantly, from 54% in 2000 to less than 35% now. 
    • Child wasting: It has not improved in the last two decades, and is rather worse than it was a decade ago.
    • Child mortality rates: India has improved in both child mortality rates, which are now at 3.7%, and in terms of undernourishment, with about 14% of the total population which gets an insufficient caloric intake.

The worldwide scenario of food security:

  • Worldwide nearly 690 million people are undernourished which warns that the COVID-19 pandemic could have affected the progress made on reducing hunger and poverty.

SDG Goals progress: 

  • The 2020 Global Hunger Index report presents a multi-dimensional measure of national, regional, and global hunger by assigning a numerical score based on several aspects of hunger.
    • It then ranks countries by GHI score and compares current scores with past results.
  • The 2020 report considers a One Health approach to linking health and sustainable food systems in order to achieve Zero Hunger by 2030.
  • The world is also not on track to achieve the second Sustainable Development Goal — known as Zero Hunger for short — by 2030. 
  • At the current pace, nearly 37 countries will fail even to reach low hunger, as defined by the Global Hunger Index Severity Scale, by 2030.

The Global Hunger Index (GHI):

  • It is a tool that measures and tracks hunger globally as well as by region and by country.
  • It is calculated annually, and its report issued in October each year.
  • The GHI was initially published by the US-based International Food Policy Research Institute (IFPRI) and Germany-based Welthungerhilfe.
  • In 2007, the Irish NGO Concern Worldwide also became a co-publisher

Calculation of GHI Scores:

  • The Global Hunger Index measures hunger on a 100-point scale, with 0 being the best score (no hunger) and 100 being the worst.
  • The GHI combines 4 component indicators:
    • the proportion of the undernourished as a percentage of the population;
    • the proportion of children under the age of five suffering from wasting, a sign of acute undernutrition;
    • the proportion of children under the age of five suffering from stunting, a sign of chronic undernutrition; and
    • the mortality rate of children under the age of five.

Source: Indian Express

World Food Day

Context:

World Food Day is celebrated on 16 October every year by the United Nations Food and Agriculture Organisation (FAO).

World Food Day:

  • In 1979, the Food and Agriculture Organization designated 16 October as World Food Day in 1979. 
    • Initially, World Food Day was launched to commemorate the establishment of FAO in 1945.
  • It promotes global awareness and action for those who suffer from hunger and for the need to ensure healthy diets for all.
  • In the current on-going pandemic this year, the day is celebrated with the theme – ‘Grow, nourish, sustain. Together. Our actions are our future."

Significance:

  • World Food Day creates many programs and activities to highlight and take necessary actions for food security and good nutrition for all, with a special focus on poor and vulnerable communities around the world.
  • Currently, more than 815 million people do not have enough to eat. Some 155 million children under the age of five (23 %) are chronically malnourished and stunted and may endure the effects of it for the rest of their lives. 
  • One in two infant deaths worldwide is caused by hunger.
  • It calls for global solidarity to help all populations, and especially the most vulnerable, to recover from the crisis, and to make food systems more resilient and robust so they can withstand increasing volatility and climate shocks, deliver affordable and sustainable healthy diets for all, and decent livelihoods for food system workers.

Food and Agriculture Organization (FAO):

  • It is a neutral intergovernmental organization established in 1945.
  • It is a specialized agency of the United Nations that leads international efforts to defeat hunger.
  • Its goal is to achieve food security for all and make sure that people have regular access to enough high-quality food to lead active healthy lives.
  • Headquarter: Rome.

Source: PIB

Thalassemia Bal Sewa Yojna

Context:

Union Ministery for Health and Family Welfare has launched the second phase of “Thalassemia Bal Sewa Yojna” for the underprivileged Thalassemic patients.

  • Objective: To provide a one-time cure opportunity for Haemoglobinopathies like Thalassaemia and Sickle Cell Disease for patients who have a matched family donor.
  • Eligibility: Only those patients are eligible whose monthly family income is below Rs 20,000.
  • The scheme has been extended to cover Aplastic Anaemia patients (lack of blood cell production in the body).

Hematopoietic Stem Cell:

  • It is an immature cell that can develop into all types of blood cells, including white blood cells, red blood cells, and platelets. Hematopoietic stem cells are found in the peripheral blood and the bone marrow. 
  • The outcome of Hematopoietic Stem Cell Transplantation (HSCT) for thalassemia major depends on several factors other than the type of donor.
  • It was first explored in humans in the 1950s and was based on observational studies in mice models.

The Hematopoietic Stem Cell Transplantation (HSCT) program:

  • It mainly refers to the transplantation of stem cells from various sources (bone marrow, growth factor-stimulated peripheral blood, and umbilical cord blood) for the treatment of various diseases like autoimmune, and genetic diseases.
  • The program was launched in 2017 and is funded by Coal India Corporate Social Responsibility (CSR).
  • The program will be extended for the next two years from 2020.

Thalassemia: