Days after the tribal hamlets of Attappadi in Palakkad district reported three infant deaths due to various reasons including sickle cell anemia, Kerala Health Minister Veena George on Saturday, December 4, visited the area and announced a special intervention package for the region.
She also visited the Agali, Kottathara hospitals and hamlets and interacted with the population. "A special intervention package will be readied for Attappadi. With this the government aims to secure the health of the tribal population in the long run," the minister told the media.
The intervention package will ensure and monitor the health of women, children and youngsters in the hamlets, the health department said in a release. A self-group comprising Anganwadi workers, helpers and ASHA workers will also be formed.
According to the release, there are 426 pregnant women in Attappadi of which 218 are from tribal communities. "There are women in the high risk category with blood pressure, anemia, sickle cell anemia and other related diseases besides being underweight. Personal health care would be ensured for them," the health department said.
On November 26, a three-day old infant at a tribal hamlet died, the third such incident in that week. The state government had ordered a multi-departmental inquiry into the incident. The deaths occurred at Agali and Puthur regions in the area.
Minister for Welfare of Scheduled Castes, Scheduled Tribes and Backward Classes, K Radhakrishnan, had also visited the backward hamlet in the district a day after the deaths were reported.
Palakkad DMO had earlier told PTI that there were seven infant deaths in the region this year alone. Medical officers said some were Intrauterine Deaths (IUD) and other children died due to sickle cell anemia.
T V Anupama, the Director of the Scheduled Tribes Development Department, had been entrusted to enquire into the matter and submit a report.