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Year : 2005  |  Volume : 49  |  Issue : 3  |  Page : 141-151

Need for dedicated focus on urban health within national rural health mission

1 Country Representative USAID-EHP Urban Health Program
2 Masters of Home Science (MHSc), Specialization in Nutrition

Correspondence Address:
S Agarwal
F-9/4, Vasant Vihar, New Delhi 110 057

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Source of Support: None, Conflict of Interest: None

PMID: 16468278

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National Rural Health Mission represents an important public health initiative to address essential health needs of the country's underserved population. For the Mission to achieve its goals, urban population needs to be included in its scope. Urban poor population constitutes nearly a third of India's urban population and is growing at three times the national population growth rate. Health status and access of reproductive and child health services of slum dwellers are poor and comparable to the rural population. Efforts to improve the conditions of urban poor necessitate strengthening national policy and fiscal mandate, augmenting and strengthening the urban health delivery system, coordinating among multiple stakeholders, involving private sector, strengthening municipal functioning and building community capacities. National Rural Health Mission should be broadened to National Public Health Mission. This paper discusses issues pertaining to health conditions of the urban poor, present status of services, challenges and suggests options for NRHM to bridge the large gap.

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