Bhubaneshwar: Raising awareness about the key behavioral changes in nutrition and capacity building of the Mahila Arogya Samiti (MAS) members is the need of an hour for a healthy society. Due to a lack of knowledge and information about nutrition, society is witnessing a number of serious problems. In this context, the Department of Community Medicines and Family Medicines of AIIMS Bhubaneswar has implemented a unique initiative under the Community Led Activities for POSHAN (CLAP) program, said AIIMS Bhubaneswar Executive Director Prof (Dr) Ashutosh Biswas on the occasion of the celebration of “POSHAN Mela” today at Nayapalli Urban Health & Training Center.
As part of the national-level Poshan Maah celebration, the Resource Center for Advancement on Public Health Nutrition hosted the program. More than 150 participants from 10 Mahila Arogya Samiti members demonstrated skills to discuss various issues related to infant and child feeding practices, complementary feeding, exclusive breastfeeding, hand washing, de-worming, newborn growth monitoring, prenatal check-up care and post-natal check ups, type II diabetes, hypertension etc.
This rigorous approach to make Mahila Arogya Samiti (MAS) members aware of the above issues started almost a month ago, involving multiple rounds of discussions on different thematic areas with MAS members. Mentors have been recruited to build the capabilities of the MAS members so that they can effectively demonstrate their demonstration skills using communication tools.
The Mela supported by UNICEF was attended by AIIMS Bhubaneswar Executive Director Prof (Dr) Ashutosh Biswas, AIIMS Bibinagar(Telengana) Executive Director Prof(Dr) Vikas Bhatia, Director, Family Welfare, Govt of Odisha Dr. Bijay Kumar Panigrahi, AIIMS Bhubaneswar CM&FM Department HoD Dr. Sonu H. Subba, Dr. Swayam Pragyan Parida, Dr. Binod Kumar Behera & Dr. Prajna Paramita Giri. Many local representatives were also present on the occasion.
This unique program is expected to promote behavior change in slum dwellers as they will be sensitized about key behaviors related to nutrition. Guests and dignitaries highly valued various activities of MAS members, such as folk dance/play/singing to raise awareness about dietary changes in behavior. The best performing teams were rewarded with trophies, while others gave out certificates for participation. Previously, a pre-evaluation and screening of MAS members’ performances was done by senior Doctors of AIIMS Bhubaneswar.
On this occasion, an ongoing medical education (CME) on nutrition was also organized for medical/nursing students and trainees from AIIMS Bhubaneswar.