Mangaluru: Minister for Health and Family Welfare U T Khader held a press meet at Circuit House here, on August 29.
Addressing the mediapersons, Khader said that after Delhi, Karnataka is the second state in the country, which through the health department, will provide early intervention to every child born in a government hospital, home or private hospital. “We have inaugurated the Child Health Screening, early intervention services in Bengaluru. At present, it is available in some clinics and is very expensive. Now, the health department will pay the charges for these tests. A child born in any private hospital will also undergo this screening with minimum charges. The charges will be fixed by the health department. We have appointed people to collect the samples. Blood samples of new born babies will be collected on a bloating paper and later sent to Bengaluru. Within 24 hours, the results will be sent online to the district government hospitals. The service will screen five types of defects for new born babies throughout the state. 2000 infants can be tested daily. In a month, 70,000 to 80,000 deliveries take place in the state. The charges for the screening will be Rs 512 but the government hospitals will not charge any amount for the test. This includes thyroid, enzymes, gender, genetic problems and fertility. At present, we will screen babies with 5 tests and will increase it to 7 later. In USA, babies are screened with 56 tests. We will make this test mandatory in the state.”
He further said, “This test is affordable for rich people but the intention of our Chief Minister is to provide such service to poor families. The mission of Early Childhood Intervention is to assure that every family who have at-risk children in this age range receive resources and support that assists them in maximizing their child’s physical, cognitive and social/emotional development while respecting the diversity of families. The test will be funded through the National Heath Mission.”
He also said that in rural areas, many women suffer from Uterus problems. “We have started treatment with new technologies. With the new technology of Thermal Ablation, women who have problems with the uterus can come, receive the treatment and leave within 15 minutes. The treatment is available at C V Raman hospital for free. Rural women can avail of this facility. We will extend the facility in other districts too.”
The Union government has banned food and cosmetics from being sold at pharmacies. “We need clarification on this; banning is not the solution. If they have blindly banned food and cosmetics from being sold, we will not follow this rule in the state. If we do then where will baby food items like cerelac, boost, be sold? If the product is not perfect, shut down the company. We need clarification on where infant food will be sold. If the union government’s decision has been made blindly, we will not accept it,” he said.
When asked about his stand on the Yettinahole river diversion project, Khader said that when Sadananda Gowda was the Chief Minister, he had sanctioned the project in the Assembly. “When the then chief minister sanctioned this project with majority of the members in the Assembly, tenders for the work were passed and the work has already been started; we cannot do anything now. We have discussed this issue with the Chief Minister.” The journos requested the minister to have a discussion with the public along with the Chief Minister regarding this project.
Recalling the recent assault on Shakir, Khader said that those involved in the assault should be punished severely. “This incident has brought shame to the district. The government is trying to make Mangaluru a smart city but for that, the people in the district should be smart.” He further said that when anyone delivers inciting speeches, suo-moto cases should be filed against them. “When leaders deliver inciting speeches, the youth will be inspired by their speech and commit crimes. Whenever there are untoward incidents, the opposition is defending themselves in the name of conversion, cow trafficking and love jihad. The Congress government has given free hand to the police officers to take action against anti-social elements. Violators should be punished severely,” he added.
Krishna Gatti, N S Kumar, Sudarshan, Melwyn and others were also present.