Evidence Action is excited to share new progress about our work in India. We are now providing technical assistance to Karnataka state, partnering with the Government of Karnataka to strengthen the anganwadi and school-based mass deworming program.
On July 7, 2017, the state of Karnataka formalized a partnership with Evidence Action in its aim to reach all children between the ages of 1-19 years through the existing anganwadi and school-based system as part of National Deworming Day (NDD). It is the ninth Indian state Evidence Action supports with technical assistance throughout the implementation of NDD.
The Need for Mass Deworming
Worm infections are a significant public health concern in India. They are responsible for stunting physical growth, impairing cognitive abilities, and lowering school attendance rates. According to WHO data, 223 million children aged 1-19 are at risk of worm infections across India (1). In February 2017, the Government of India treated 260.4 million children in 34 out of 36 states as part of the world’s largest single-day public health intervention.
National Deworming Day dedicates one to two days per year (depending on the treatment frequency recommended by the Government of India, in alignment with the World Health Organization), to deworm all at-risk children between 1-19 years of age. The Government of Karnataka has consistently observed NDD since its launch in 2015, making inroads toward reaching the approximately 20 million children at risk of worm infection in the state. In February 2017, Karnataka successfully dewormed 12.8 million of these children. To make sure that the deworming treatment reaches all children in the state, Karnataka has intensified its effort, with the next treatment round scheduled for August 10, 2017. With the signing of the MoU, Evidence Action will assist in strengthening NDD in the state by providing technical assistance to further support the Government of Karnataka beginning in February 2018.
Over the next six months, Evidence Action will work with the Government of Karnataka to lay the groundwork necessary to further increase coverage for its 20 million children in need of deworming treatment. We look forward to a productive partnership that will ultimately improve health, education, and opportunity for many more children in India!
1. World Health Organization. (2015). Soil-transmitted Helminth Infections (PCT databank). Retrieved from: http://www.who.int/neglected_diseases/preventive_chemotherapy/sth/db/?units=minimal®ion=all&country=ind&countries=ind&year=2015