IGNOU, Unicef sensitise scribes on infant deaths

August 4th, 2011 - 8:02 pm ICT by IANS  

New Delhi, Aug 4 (IANS) The Indira Gandhi National Open University (IGNOU) along with Unicef sensitised media personnel on the high infant mortality and low immunisation levels in Madhya Pradesh, a statement said Thursday.

“A 20-member team comprising national, state and district level media visited Jabalpur in Madhya Pradesh and observed the low rate of routine immunisation and high infant mortality in the state,” a varsity official said.

The journalists visited the state-of-the-art special care newborn units, set-up by the National Rural Health Mision (NRHM) and Unicef, as well as the cold chain vaccine storage units in the district.

According to IGNOU, the visit was part of second phase of its partnership with Unicef launched a month ago to address the issue.

The journalists got a first-hand experience about the micro-planning involved in the handling of cold chain equipment that maintains vaccines at right temperatures.

“The field visit to Jabalpur followed media engagement held through video-conference in Delhi, in which over 80 media professionals from Delhi, Bhopal and Jabalpur exchanged views on the subject,” added the official.

Tania Goldner, Unicef chief of field office, Madhya Pradesh, said that around 5,000 children under the age of five die daily in India and a large number of these deaths are due to preventable causes.

“Vaccine-preventable diseases are one of the major causes of morbidity, disability and mortality among children in many states of India.

“It is here that we need media’s support to convey the need for immunisation as well as help to motivate parents for immunising their children,” she added.

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