ISLAMABAD : The preparations to launch the first-ever of its kind Ehsaas Nash-o-Numa programme were in full swing aiming to prevent stunting in children through provision of specialized nutritious food to pregnant and lactating mothers and their children under the age of 24 months. The programme will also ensure immunization coverage of the newborns and awareness creation among mothers regarding hygiene, breastfeeding and sanitation. Prime Minister’s Special Assistant on Social Protection and Poverty Alleviation, Dr. Sania Nishtar visited the Nash-o-Numa Centre at District Headquarters Hospital, Khyber District the other day with her team to review the preparations for Ehsaas Nash-o-Numa programme before its formal launch. She interacted with the staff and deserving women on the spot and observed the practical exercises of the facilities being provided there to prevent from stunting. Dr. Nishtar said a registration desk has been set up at the Nash-o-Numa center to facilitate deserving women where our staff would register pregnant and lactating women and their newborns in the Nash-o-Numa App. She said after registration, our staff would conduct a detailed examination of the height, weight and health of women and their children under the two years of age associated with stunting. A proper immunizations and food plan for affected children and women would be followed, she said. They would be registered in the Nash-o-Numa App and record would also be maintained in the guidebook. Informational videos and awareness sessions on food, hygiene and health of women and their children have been especially arranged in regional languages for the benefit of women registered under this programme. It has been made mandatory for the beneficiaries women of Nash-o-Numa programme to attend these awareness sessions. After attending the awareness session, the pregnant and lactating women and their weak children would be provided packets of supplementary healthy food to prevent stunting. Dr. Nishtar said a separate counter has been set up for the distribution of supplementary food where the staff would provide complete guidance to the women on the use of this food. The maternal and child health related initiative would also provide Nash-o-Numa cash stipend to the women consumers. After getting food packets, women would be able to get the stipend from the ATM machine set up at the center, she informed.
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