The Health and Family Welfare Department on Thursday began undertaking a Mass Drug Administration (MDA) round in a phased manner for elimination of Lymphatic Filariasis (LF) in 15 endemic districts of the State.
State Programme Officer, Vector Borne Diseases, Department of Health and Family Welfare, Dr Shubhashisha Mohanty said, “Keeping in mind India's commitment to eliminate filariasis by 2030 and acknowledging the importance of continuing important public health initiatives, the Government is undertaking MDA rounds in 15 LF endemic districts in phases. The MDA rounds are organised as per Covid-19 guidelines issued by the Government of India. The first phase of the MDA programme began from February 10 to 19 and the second phase will start from March 7 to 16.”
As many as eight districts that are undertaking MDA from February 10 are Angul, Baleswar, Cuttack, Ganjam, Dhenkanal, Jharsuguda, Nuapada and Nayagarh. The seven districts undertaking MDA in the second phase include Bargarh, Keonjhar, Kandhamal, Mayurbhanj, Subarnapur, Sundargarh and Sambalpur.
Director, Public Health, Dr Niranjan Mishra stated that filaria is a serious public health problem which is spread by mosquito bites. Filariasis is one of the leading causes of long-term disability worldwide. The condition affects livelihoods, opportunities and working capacity of those suffering from LF and they often become a subject of stigma. It can be prevented by consuming anti-filaria drugs (DEC and Albendazole) administered by trained health workers.
During the campaign, around 55,544 trained volunteers including ASHAs would visit every houseshold as drug administrators in eight districts.