Recently, the Prime Minister launched the National Sickle Cell Anaemia Elimination Mission and distributed sickle cell genetic status cards to the beneficiaries in Madhya Pradesh.
About the National Sickle Cell Anaemia Elimination Mission:
- The Mission aims to address the pressing health challenges posed by sickle cell disease, particularly among the tribal population, will mark a crucial milestone in the Government’s ongoing efforts to eliminate sickle cell disease as a public health problem by 2047.
- Objectives of the Mission:
- Provision of affordable and accessible care to all SCD patients
- To ensure quality of care for SCD patients
- To reduce the prevalence of SCD
- Health promotion- Awareness generation & pre-marital genetic counselling
- Prevention: Universal screening and early detection
- Holistic Management & continuum of care: Management of persons with sickle cell disease at primary, secondary and tertiary health care levels; treatment facilities at tertiary health care facilities Patient support system Community adoption.
About Sickle Cell disease:
- Sickle cell disease is a group of inherited red blood cell disorders that affect haemoglobin, the protein that carries oxygen through the body.
- The red blood cells are disc-shaped and flexible enough to move easily through the blood vessels. If people have sickle cell disease, their red blood cells are crescent or “sickle” shaped.
- These cells do not bend or move easily and can block blood flow to the rest of their body leading to serious problems, including stroke, eye problems, infections, and episodes of pain called pain crises.
- As per the Census 2011, India has an 8.6% tribal population, which is 67.8 million across the Indian states.
- The MoHFW tribal health expert committee report has listed sickle cell disease as one of the 10 special problems in tribal heath that affect the tribal people disproportionately, thus making this an important intervention.
- The program will be carried out in a mission mode covering the entire population from zero to 18 years of age and shall incrementally include the entire population up to 40 years as a part of National Health Mission.
- In the initial stage, the mission would prioritise its intervention in high prevalence and tribal states/UT, the plan would subsequently expand to include all states/UTs in a phase-wise manner with an incremental approach.
- The mission aims to cover 7 crore people with screening, counselling for prevention and care for people with SCD in three and half years.
Q1) What are Red Blood Cells?
Red blood cells, also known as erythrocytes, deliver oxygen to the tissues in your body. Oxygen turns into energy and your tissues release carbon dioxide. Your red blood cells also transport carbon dioxide to your lungs for you to exhale.