When thirty-three-year-old Rina Rothad, a resident of Rudraprayag district, conceived her second baby this year, she was identified as a high-risk pregnancy because her blood pressure and blood haemoglobin levels were below normal. But unlike the past, Rina found that the local Auxiliary Nurse Midwife (ANM or a village-level health care worker) examined her after every 15 days and provided her with necessary medicines such as Folic Acid and multivitamin tablets. In fact, Rina’s health was also monitored by the District Magistrate and the Chief Medical Officer. All this was possible because of a new android-based mobile application — called “Mother Awakening Application” or MAA for short — that was launched in the district. The idea was to ensure that women with high-risk pregnancies deliver their babies in normal and healthy conditions.
According to Rina, when one week was left for her expected date of delivery local ANM started contacting her over the phone every day to inquire about her health. “I had no labour pain. But on August 30 there was some complication that led to bleeding. I contacted to ANM who suggested that I reached the medical college,” said Rina. Eventually, she gave birth to a healthy baby boy but the difference in her two pregnancies was that her health and wellbeing were regularly monitored by the ANM worker and other senior officials.
A high-risk pregnancy is one that threatens the health or life of the mother or her fetus. It often requires specialised care from specially trained providers. The administration has opened a six-bed “Prityasha” (meaning hope) ward, which provides free of cost specialised care to such pregnant women who face high risks.
Rina is among 146 women in Rudraprayag who were identified with high-risk pregnancy in the past four months and all of them delivered safely. This is unlike the past when pregnant women had no such monitoring and often suffered unfortunate complications at the time of delivery.
This change in the hill district has occurred essentially because of the MAA app. Given the change it has brought about in Rudraprayag, Chief Minister Trivendra Singh Rawat has directed other districts to take up such initiatives across the state and promote safe and institutional delivery.
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