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ASHA Worker Matilda Kullu Changes Odisha Village’s Healthcare Scenario, FORBES Honors Efforts

Matilda Kullu has been working as a healthcare worker for nearly 15 years. She keeps her village's women, expectant mothers' and children's health, hygiene, and contraception in check. She is the first ASHA worker to have featured in Forbes India list for her work in the medical field.

For over a decade, the 45-year-old ASHA worker, Matilda Kullu, has been serving the people of Gargadbahal village in Odisha's Sundargarh district, and keeping their health and nutrition in check.

Wearing a blue sari and carrying her kit of necessary medicines and a record book on a bicycle, Matilda Kullu pays visits to more than 200 households and provides them with necessary medications.

But she had a rough patch to take off and attain the recognition and respect of the people. She had to combat the stereotypes of casteism and superstition to get the villagers to listen to her.

Her work involves going door-to-door, checking on expectant and new mothers, and testing for various diseases such as malaria. Besides, she counsels women on hygiene and contraception and the benefits of family planning.

Since the novel coronavirus hit the country, Matilda Kullu took on the additional task of educating the community about the virus, its symptoms and effects, and pursuing them for vaccination.

She holds meetings with Anganwadi workers and follows up with houses for COVID and other health issues. Ms. Kullu's dedication and constant efforts bore a fruitful result, and she was recognised by Forbes India. She is the first ASHA worker to be featured in the list of Women Power 2021, among other influential personalities.

Today, Matilda Kullu's village holds a complete rate of institutional deliveries. Besides, the village is one of the few rural areas in India to have completed 100 per cent of COVID-19 vaccination in the initial phase.

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