• Every house- hold will be visited to ensure consumption of Anti-Filarial drug by community: Arun Kumar Singh

    Written By News Root| Published on Sep 13, 2022, 18:08 IST | 1663072691934
    Every house- hold will be visited to ensure consumption of Anti-Filarial drug by community: Arun Kumar Singh

    Ranchi: Government of Jharkhand is committed to eliminate Lymphatic Filariais from the state and Department of Health, Medical Education and Family Welfare will undertake Mass Drug Administration (MDA) from 16th to 30th September across 34 CHCs of 8 districts i.e. Lohardaga, Hazaribag, Guridih, Gardhwa, East Singhbhoom, West Singhbhoom, Khunti and Ranchi). This round will be undertaken by trained health workers strictly observing COVID-19 protocols including hand and respiratory hygiene and social distanc-ing.


    Filariasis is a disabling disease that is transmitted by mosquitoes. Usually acquired in childhood, the infec-tion damages the lymphatic system and if left untreated, causes enlargement of body parts such as hy-drocele (swelling of the scrotum) and lymphedema (swelling in the limbs). A few people also develop chronic cough called Tropical Pulmonary Eosinophilia and can have symptoms like passing of milky white urine (chyluria).Arun Kumar Singh, ACS, Health, Medical Education and Family Welfare, Govt. of Jharkhand said that State Health department is committed to eliminate Filaria from state. He further added to ensure that, health department is going to start Mass Drug Administration round in 34 CHCs of 8 districts and will target around 5237859 beneficiaries to ensure consumption of two drug i.e. DEC and Albendazole. 



    He further informed that around 20951 teams will organize booth at Health Facilities, Schools, collages and public places on the first day and from second day onwards they will visit every house-hold to ensure consumption of these drugs in front of health workers. He also said that Raid Response teams have been formed to handle any such situation happens post consumption of drug.   


    Dr. Anil Kumar, State Program Officer, VBD, Department of Health and Family Welfare, Jharkhand said, “Filariasis is preventable with the administration of anti-filarial drugs during annual Mass Drug      Administration rounds”. During MDA, a combination of two drugs i.e. diethylcarbamazine (DEC) and albendazole will be administered to the eligible population (excluding children below 2 years of age, pregnant women, and seriously ill people) in affected areas to interrupt transmission of the disease. The drugs also have added benefits including treating infections caused by intestinal worms, scabies, and lice, and im-proving nutrition uptake and the physical and cognitive development of children. Side effects are in general limited to those who have high level of microfilariae in the blood and include vomiting, headache, nausea which are usually self-limiting but Rapid Response Teams have been also deployed to address such episodes which are very minimal. 

    He also mentioned, “we must encourage community compliance so we can eliminate Filaria together.”  Jharkhand has 22 LF endemic districts and based on data till Dec. 2021, there are approximately 43985 lymphoedema and 44620 hydrocele cases identified and out of 38376 surgeries of hydrocele patients completed. He further aided that Filariasis is one of the leading causes of long-term disability worldwide.

    Commonly acquired in childhood but manifest in adulthood, this infection damages the lymphatic system and if left untreated, it causes abnormal swelling of the body parts which is irreversible. People with Filariasis often suffer from manifestations such as Hydrocele (swelling of the scrotum), lymphoedema (swelling in the limbs) and Chyluria (milky white urine). 

    The condition affects livelihoods, opportunities and working ca-pacity of those suffering from LF and they often become a subject of stigma. Filariasis is a disabling dis-ease which can be prevented by consuming anti-filaria drugs (DEC and Albendazole) administered by trained health workers.”

    All the districts have carried out preparatory activities including training of Drug Administrators and supervisors. The healthcare workers have also been trained on COVID-19 safety protocols to prevent transmission of the disease while administering the anti-filaria drugs. Rapid response teams have been constituted by the health department to address any concerns during the mass drug administration rounds.

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