India launches campaign for deworming millions of children

February 10, 2016 byAshok Sharma
India launches campaign for deworming millions of children
An Indian schoolchild takes a deworming tablet in Hyderabad, India, Wednesday, Feb. 10, 2016 as part of a massive national deworming campaign to prevent parasitic worms from infecting their bodies and impairing their mental and physical development. The campaign is targeting 270 million children across the country. (AP Photo/Mahesh Kumar A.)

Millions of Indian children are getting deworming treatment in a massive national campaign to prevent parasitic worms from infecting them and impairing their mental and physical development.

In a village on the outskirts of the Indian capital, the children washed their hands and lined up to chew the deworming tablets given to them by their teachers and health workers before opening their bags for studies on Wednesday morning.

The campaign is targeting 270 million children across the country for Wednesday's effort and another next week for children missed the first time, the Health Ministry said in a statement.

Worms interfere with nutrient uptake in children and could lead to anemia, malnourishment and physical and mental impairment. The infection risk is mainly caused by lack of proper toilets, unclean drinking water, poor hygiene and dirty surroundings.

The World Health Organization estimates that 220 million children between the ages of 1 and 14 are at risk of parasitic worm infection in India.

On Wednesday, nearly 900,000 teachers, principals and health workers were mobilized in schools and government-sponsored child and mother care centers.

The deworming initiative, along with measures to address hygiene and sanitation, would go a long way in improving the health of children as well as that of the country, said By Poonam Khetrapal Singh, the WHO Regional Director for South-East Asia. In a statement, Singh said India's campaign complements WHO's battle against neglected tropical diseases, those on the verge of elimination that continue to be public health challenges.

India launches campaign for deworming millions of children
A health worker administers a deworming pill to a girl in a village in Neemrana , 123 kilometers (76.8 miles) from New Delhi, in the Indian state of Rajasthan, Wednesday, Feb. 10, 2016. Millions of Indian children are taking part in a massive national deworming campaign to prevent parasitic worms from infecting their bodies and impairing their mental and physical development. The campaign is targeting 270 million children across the country with a second treatment planned next week for those left out on Wednesday, India's Health Ministry said in a statement. (AP Photo/Manish Swarup)

Priya Jha, who leads non-governmental organization Evidence Action's work in India, said details of a second dose to the children would be decided soon by the Indian government on the basis of a study carried out in different states.

She said the campaign went off smoothly with children and their parents eager to participate in it. The tablets were provided by the WHO and the Indian government.

India launches campaign for deworming millions of children
Indian schoolchildren line up to take a deworming tablet in Hyderabad, India, Wednesday, Feb. 10, 2016 as part of a massive national deworming campaign to prevent parasitic worms from infecting their bodies and impairing their mental and physical development. The campaign is targeting 270 million children across the country. (AP Photo/Mahesh Kumar A.)

India launches campaign for deworming millions of children
Students sit in the ground after taking deworming pills in their school in Neemrana, 123 kilometers (76.8 miles) from New Delhi, in the Indian state of Rajasthan, Wednesday, Feb. 10, 2016. Millions of Indian children are taking part in a massive national deworming campaign to prevent parasitic worms from infecting their bodies and impairing their mental and physical development. The campaign is targeting 270 million children across the country with a second treatment planned next week for those left out on Wednesday, India's Health Ministry said in a statement. (AP Photo/Manish Swarup)
India launches campaign for deworming millions of children
A girl drinks water after chewing a deworming pill in their school in Neemrana,123 kilometers (76.8 miles) from New Delhi, in the Indian state of Rajasthan, Wednesday, Feb. 10, 2016. Millions of Indian children are taking part in a massive national deworming campaign to prevent parasitic worms from infecting their bodies and impairing their mental and physical development. The campaign is targeting 270 million children across the country with a second treatment planned next week for those left out on Wednesday, India's Health Ministry said in a statement. (AP Photo/Manish Swarup)
India launches campaign for deworming millions of children
A primary class student takes a deworming pill as others wait in a queue at a school in Neemrana, 123 kilometers (76.8 miles) from New Delhi, in the Indian state of Rajsthan Wednesday, Feb. 10, 2016. Millions of Indian children are taking part in a massive national deworming campaign to prevent parasitic worms from infecting their bodies and impairing their mental and physical development. The campaign is targeting 270 million children across the country with a second treatment planned next week for those left out on Wednesday, India's Health Ministry said in a statement. (AP Photo/Manish Swarup)
India launches campaign for deworming millions of children
Girls take deworming pills in their school in Neemrana, 123 kilometers (76.8 miles) from New Delhi, in the Indian state of Rajasthan, Wednesday, Feb. 10, 2016. Millions of Indian children are taking part in a massive national deworming campaign to prevent parasitic worms from infecting their bodies and impairing their mental and physical development. The campaign is targeting 270 million children across the country with a second treatment planned next week for those left out on Wednesday, India's Health Ministry said in a statement. (AP Photo/Manish Swarup)
India launches campaign for deworming millions of children
A girl takes a deworming pill as others wait in a queue at a school in Neemrana, 123 kilometers (76.8 miles) from New Delhi, in the Indian state of Rajsthan Wednesday, Feb. 10, 2016. Millions of Indian children are taking part in a massive national deworming campaign to prevent parasitic worms from infecting their bodies and impairing their mental and physical development. The campaign is targeting 270 million children across the country with a second treatment planned next week for those left out on Wednesday, India's Health Ministry said in a statement. (AP Photo/Manish Swarup)
India launches campaign for deworming millions of children
School children line up to wash their hands before taking deworming pill at a school in Neemrana, 123 kilometers (76.8 miles) from New Delhi, in the Indian state of Rajsthan Wednesday, Feb. 10, 2016. Millions of Indian children are taking part in a massive national deworming campaign to prevent parasitic worms from infecting their bodies and impairing their mental and physical development. The campaign is targeting 270 million children across the country with a second treatment planned next week for those left out on Wednesday, India's Health Ministry said in a statement. (AP Photo/Manish Swarup)
India launches campaign for deworming millions of children
A school teacher gives a deworming pill to a student as others wait in a queue in Neemrana, 123 kilometers (76.8 miles) from New Delhi, in the Indian state of Rajsthan Wednesday, Feb. 10, 2016. Millions of Indian children are taking part in a massive national deworming campaign to prevent parasitic worms from infecting their bodies and impairing their mental and physical development. The campaign is targeting 270 million children across the country with a second treatment planned next week for those left out on Wednesday, India's Health Ministry said in a statement. (AP Photo/Manish Swarup)
India launches campaign for deworming millions of children
Students gather around a poster of deworming at their school in Neemrana, 123 kilometers (76.8 miles) from New Delhi, in the Indian state of Rajasthan, Wednesday, Feb. 10, 2016. Millions of Indian children are taking part in a massive national deworming campaign to prevent parasitic worms from infecting their bodies and impairing their mental and physical development. The campaign is targeting 270 million children across the country with a second treatment planned next week for those left out on Wednesday, India's Health Ministry said in a statement. (AP Photo/Manish Swarup)
India launches campaign for deworming millions of children
Students show their deworming pills before taking in their school in Neemrana ,123 kilometers (76.8 miles) from New Delhi, in the Indian state of Rajasthan, Wednesday, Feb. 10, 2016. Millions of Indian children are taking part in a massive national deworming campaign to prevent parasitic worms from infecting their bodies and impairing their mental and physical development. The campaign is targeting 270 million children across the country with a second treatment planned next week for those left out on Wednesday, India's Health Ministry said in a statement. (AP Photo/Manish Swarup)

Explore further: Children's mental health survey launched

Related Stories

Children's mental health survey launched

November 11, 2015
The first report on the mental health of young people between the ages of two and 19 will involve an expert researcher from the University of Exeter Medical School.

UN launches polio vaccination campaign in Mideast

November 9, 2013
The United Nations says a massive campaign to vaccinate children in the Middle East against polio has begun after the first cases in 14 years were confirmed in northeastern Syria last week.

Rare polio virus spreads to Israel's north

August 21, 2013
Israel's president is urging the country's children to get polio boosters after a rare appearance of the virus spread to the north of the country.

Israel takes polio vaccination campaign nationwide (Update)

August 11, 2013
Israel took its polio vaccination campaign nationwide on Sunday, saying a two-week vaccination effort in the south was not enough to curb the threat of an outbreak of the virus.

Global health researchers urge integrating de-worming into HIV care in Africa

August 2, 2012
HIV care centers are an important and highly accessed point of care for HIV-infected children and their families in sub-Saharan Africa, but opportunities to address other health issues are being missed. Proven interventions, ...

Recommended for you

It's not just for kids—even adults appear to benefit from a regular bedtime

September 21, 2018
Sufficient sleep has been proven to help keep the body healthy and the mind sharp. But it's not just an issue of logging at least seven hours of Z's.

Most nations falling short of UN targets to cut premature deaths from chronic diseases

September 21, 2018
People in the UK, US and China have a higher risk of dying early from conditions like cancer, heart disease and stroke than people in Italy, France, South Korea and Australia.

Patient-centered visual aid helps physicians discuss risks, treatments with parents

September 21, 2018
A series of illustrations and charts designed as decision aids for parents of children with minor head injuries helped them communicate with emergency medicine physicians and make informed decisions about their child's care, ...

Alcohol responsible for one in 20 deaths worldwide: WHO

September 21, 2018
Alcohol kills three million people worldwide each year—more than AIDS, violence and road accidents combined, the World Health Organization said Friday, adding that men are particularly at risk.

Smart pills dumb down medical care, experts warn

September 21, 2018
Enthusiasm for an emerging digital health tool, the smart pill, is on the rise but researchers at the University of Illinois at Chicago have published a paper in the American Journal of Bioethics that cautions health care ...

China's doctor shortage prompts rush for AI health care

September 20, 2018
Qu Jianguo, 64, had a futuristic medical visit in Shanghai as he put his wrist through an automated pulse-taking machine and received the result within two minutes on a mobile phone—without a doctor present.

0 comments

Please sign in to add a comment. Registration is free, and takes less than a minute. Read more

Click here to reset your password.
Sign in to get notified via email when new comments are made.