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Year : 2022  |  Volume : 66  |  Issue : 3  |  Page : 307-312

Evaluation of the rashtriya bal swasthya karyakram (RBSK): A national children healthcare program in a health district of West Bengal, India

1 Assistant Chief Medical Officer of Health, Department of Health and Family Welfare, Government of West Bengal, Kolkata, West Bengal, India
2 Associate Professor, Department of Community Medicine, Medical College, Kolkata, West Bengal, India
3 Associate Professor, Department of Gynaecology and Obstetrics, Medical College, Kolkata, West Bengal, India
4 Senior Resident, Department of Community Medicine, Midnapore Medical College, Kolkata, West Bengal, India
5 Senior Resident, Department of Community Medicine, College of Medicine and Sagore Dutta Hospital, Kolkata, West Bengal, India
6 Health Counsellor, Department of Transfusion Medicine and Blood Centre, Institute of Child Health, Kolkata, West Bengal, India

Correspondence Address:
Shibaji Gupta
1C-1003, Avishikta 2, 369/3, Purbachal Kalitala Road, Kolkata - 700 078, West Bengal
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Source of Support: None, Conflict of Interest: None

DOI: 10.4103/ijph.ijph_1690_21

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Background: The Rashtriya Bal Swasthya Karyakram (RBSK) was launched in 2013 to screen and manage birth defects, deficiencies, diseases, and developmental delays including disabilities in Indian children, with the help of designated mobile health teams and grassroot workers across the country. Objectives: Performance of the RBSK program in three selected blocks of a health district of a large Indian state (West Bengal) was assessed. Methods: The performance assessment was based on input, process, and output performances, using checklists based on RBSK operational guidelines. Results: While some essential evaluation tools were available in required numbers at the block level, many were unavailable. There were deficiencies in the number of health staff appointed. Although most screening camps were conducted as per microplan, some were not. Anthropometric measurements were not done in some camps; Information, Education, and Communication (IEC) materials were not used adequately. Issues with fund management were also noted. The intervention rate at higher centers (District Early Intervention Centre) was low with regard to the children referred for management. Involvement of grassroot workers such as ASHA was also found to be lacking. Conclusion: Frequent orientation training of medical officers and staff is needed along with the efforts to strengthen the referral system and the patient tracking system. Sensitizing the children and their guardians regarding the importance of the relevant health issues is also needed with the help of the proper implementation of IEC services.

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