UT to launch weekly iron and folic acid supplementation programme

UT Administration officials will be announcing the launch of the government of India's Weekly Iron and Folic acid Supplementation (WIFS) blue campaign for adolescent school going children from class VI to XII on Tuesday. The actual programme shall start by April 2013.

The Ministry of Health and Family Welfare, Government of India, has started the SOLID BANO INDIA campaign through a "Weekly Iron And Folic Acid supplementation (WIFS) Programme" to reduce the prevalence and severity of iron and folic acid deficiency anemia in the adolescent population group (10 -19 years). This programme targets adolescents boys and girls enrolled in classes VI -XII in government/ aided/ municipal schools, as well as willing class teacher.

Under this program, iron and folic acid tablets are administered under the direct observation by class teachers on a weekly basis to the target population free of cost and Albendazole tablets for de-worming are administered twice a year to the same target population group in February and August.

There is minimal side effect of iron tablets if taken after meals.

Through this long term strategy, it is the aim that the iron stores wull be built better, and cognitive development and physical development will improve, and the number of death or disabilities due to anemia will decrease. About 90,000 adolescents have been registered in UT Chandigarh as beneficiaries.

In this regard training has already been imparted to various stake holders at the program level, school level and Department of Social Welfare level. Also the Medical Superintendents, Nursing Superintendents from major health institution, members of village Health and Sanitation Committee, FOSWAC etc in the city have been given orientation training.

Convergence for successful implementation of the programme is being ensured by involving parents, members of FOSWAC, Zila Parishad, VHSC and the Medical Officer of Health. Further the preparedness plan for the demand generation and acceptance of Iron Folic Acid Tablets/ Albendazole tablets by all the parents to their adolescents, both boys and girls aged 10-19 years, needs to be ensured.

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