Govt planning to establish maternity huts for hard-to-reach areas

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Representational Image File/GK

Srinagar: To provide emergency medical treatment to expecting mothers, the government is planning to establish maternity huts for hard-to-reach areas.

As per the details available with Greater Kashmir, these huts will be established near Community Health Centres and Primary Health Centres, where 24x7 obstetrics, delivery services will be provided to pregnant women residing in hard-to-reach areas (HRAs) in snowbound places, who are expected to deliver during winter months. The initiative has been taken to reduce maternal and perinatal, neonatal morbidity and mortality.

"These huts will be established in far off areas especially from December to February as these places become inaccessible for emergency obstetric care during such times,” officials said. Directorate of Health Services Kashmir and Jammu, with support from NHM will establish these huts in their respective divisions. It is worth mentioning that areas like Gurez, Karnah, Tangdhar, Machil and others in Chenab valley remain cut off during winters for months and it becomes difficult for pregnant women for timely medical interventions.

Last year, a pregnant woman in north Kashmir's Kupwara district gave birth to a child while she was being taken to a hospital on a makeshift cot as the village lacks proper road connectivity. “If established these maternity huts will be a live saviour for many expecting mothers who develop complications. Government usually announces these developments, but nothing on ground is being done to help people living in far flung areas,” said one of the local residents from Karnah. He said, during winters, when they remain cut-off due to heavy snowfall, getting basic health facilities is a must for every citizen. During winters, Gurez valley remains cut-off from Kashmir due to heavy snowfall and life comes to a standstill and patient care takes a hit.

DHSK spokesman, Dr Mir Mushtaq told Greater Kashmir that the department is always trying to provide better health facilities in hard-to-reach areas. " There are problems in remote areas. We are establishing these huts to provide better facilities in these areas. We are on it and soon the problems will be solved, " he said.

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