Kathua, November 29 | The ‘Back to Village’ has proved to be a boon for the villagers of Nanan in Kathua district with inauguration of recently constructed Health and Wellness Center (HWC) during second phase of this unique programme by Deputy Commissioner, O P Bhagat, in presence of Director Rural Development, Sudershan Kumar.
Through this ambitious initiative, the government has succeeded in achieving the goal of bridging the poor health infrastructure gap to some extent.
This HWC will function as facilitator and platform for varied wellness activities including Yoga and AYUSH to deal especially with non-communicable diseases (NCDs) like Diabetes and Hypertension, which have emerged as lifestyle disorders across the world.
Earlier, the villagers of Nanan and the nearby villages had to visit the Sub Centre located at Nanan, being the peripheral outpost and the only hope of healthcare for the remote population which catered to the basic primary and quality health care needs of the families surviving in difficult circumstances in the remote areas. These centres are usually manned by Female Multipurpose Health Workers (FMPHW) and Pharmacists whose focus is on primitive and preventive healthcare services besides to act as a referral to the District Hospital for curative services. But the optimum utilization of Sub Centers in achieving their key objective of strengthening primary healthcare is hindered due to factors like lack of proper infrastructure and manpower, poor monitoring and supportive supervision besides geographical barriers.
A well-built infrastructure is the key determinant of health and wellbeing of an individual and the society as a whole. Primary health management begins from Sub Centre (SC) level, is the first check post of a health seeker. Health-seeking behaviour can be substantially improved if SC is more empowered to provide primary treatment. To achieve this objective, the SC at village Nanan was remodelled as HWC to provide preventive, promotive, rehabilitative and curative care for an expanded range of services encompassing reproductive and child health services, communicable diseases, non-communicable diseases, palliative care and elderly care, oral health, ENT care and basic emergency care.
The HWC will be equipped and staffed by an appropriately trained Primary Health Care team, comprising Multi-Purpose Workers (male and female) and ASHAs to be led by a Mid-Level Health Provider (MLHP).
To ensure equitable population coverage and address issues of marginalization, the frontline workers would create population-based household lists and undertake registration of all individuals and families residing within the catchment area of a Health and Wellness Centre. It is this registration that is referred to as empanelment. It is a right of anyone, resident in that area to be enrolled.
The services envisaged at the HWC level will include early identification, basic management, counselling, ensuring treatment adherence, follow up care, ensuring continuity of care by appropriate referrals, optimal home and community follow up, and health promotion and prevention for the expanded range of services. Besides, care provision at every level would be provided as per clinical pathways and standard treatment guidelines.
Pertinently, during the first phase of B2V programme in the month of June 2019, the villagers demanding better health care facility for their area were assured by the designated officer that their demand will be proposed before the appropriate forum. As a result, after a few months the Health and Family Welfare Department sanctioned Rs. 7 Lakh to renovate the existing Sub Centre building transforming it into a Health and Wellness Centre (HWC), by the Rural Development Department.
According to the Sarpanch, Panch and villagers, Back to Village programme provided a platform to flag their issues and for the first time the officers are coming personally to listen to their demands and grievances otherwise, they had to move from pillar to post to get their even paltry issues redressed.
The villagers expressed their gratitude to the administration for providing this much-needed healthcare centre equipped with requisite facilities to provide treatment for diseases such as blood pressure, diabetes, old age-related ailments besides mother-child care.