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An Overview of POSHAN Abhiyaan

  • The POSHAN Abhiyaan or National Nutrition Mission is Government of India’s flagship programme to improve nutritional outcomes for children, pregnant women and lactating mothers.
  • It is a multi-ministerial convergence scheme with the Ministry of Women and Child Development being the implementing authority.

Objective:  

To reduce stunting in identified Districts of India with the highest malnutrition burden by improving the utilization of key Anganwadi Services and improving the quality of Anganwadi Services delivery. Its aim to ensure holistic development and adequate nutrition for pregnant women, mothers and children.

Features: 

  • The POSHAN Abhiyaan, as an apex body, will monitor, supervise, fix targets and guide the nutrition-related interventions across the Ministries.
  • The proposal consists of:
  • mapping of various schemes contributing towards addressing malnutrition – introducing a very robust convergence mechanism
  • ICT based Real-Time Monitoring system
  • incentivizing States/UTs for meeting the targets
  • incentivizing Anganwadi Workers (AWWs) for using IT-based tools – eliminating registers used by AWWs
  • introducing measurement of the height of children at the Anganwadi Centres (AWCs)
  • Social Audits
  • Setting-up Nutrition Resource Centres, involving masses through Jan  Andolan for their participation in nutrition through various activities, among others.

Key Nutrition Strategies and Interventions: 

IYCF (Infant and Young child feeding), Food and Nutrition, Immunization, Institutional Delivery, WASH (Water, Sanitation and Hygiene), De-worming, ORS-Zinc, Food Fortification, Dietary Diversification, Adolescent Nutrition,  Maternal Health and Nutrition, ECD (Early childhood development)/ECCE  (Early Childhood Care and Education), Convergence, ICT-RTM (Information and Communication. Technology-enabled Real-Time Monitoring) and Capacity Building etc.

POSHAN Maah:

The month of September is celebrated as Rashtriya POSHAN Maah. The activities in POSHAN Maah focussed on Social Behavioural Change and Communication (SBCC). The broad themes were: antenatal care, optimal breastfeeding (early and exclusive), complementary feeding, anaemia, growth monitoring, girls’ – education, diet, right age of marriage, hygiene and sanitation, eating healthy – food fortification.

Anaemia Mukt Bharat: 

Funding: 

The scheme is 50% Externally Aided Project (EAP) by the World Bank and 50% Gross Budgetary Support by the Centre and State Govt in the following  ratios:

  • 60:40 for States & UTs with the legislature
  • 90:10 for the North-Eastern States & Himalayan States
  • 100% for Union Territories without legislature

Nodal Agencies:

  • NITI Aayog will conduct monitoring and evaluation of the scheme periodically through their ‘Technical Support Unit’ to assess the progress and impact of the programme.

Major Impact: 

The programme through the targets will strive to reduce the level of stunting,  under-nutrition, anaemia and low birth weight babies. It will create synergy,  ensure better monitoring, issue alerts for timely action, and encourage States/ UTs to perform, guide and supervise the line Ministries and States/UTs to achieve the targeted goals.