Deoghar: ECHO India, a non-profit trust dedicated to improving healthcare outcomes in India through capacity building, has partnered with AIIMS Deoghar, a premier medical institution in the country, to host a Nationwide Summit on Tribal Health. The summit brought together experts, policymakers, and stakeholders to discuss the challenges facing the tribal communities in accessing quality healthcare and explore potential solutions.
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The summit featured a distinguished panel of speakers, including Arjun Munda, Minister of Tribal Affairs, Government of India; Dr (Prof.) N. K. Arora, President of AIIMS Deoghar; Dr (Prof.) Saurabh Varshney, Executive Director & CEO of AIIMS Deoghar and Dr Col Kumud Rai, Chairman and Managing Trustee of ECHO India.
Tribal Health Minister Arjun Munda expressed his support for the summit, stating,
The government is committed to ensuring that all citizens, including those in tribal communities, have access to quality healthcare. I am pleased to see that organizations like ECHO India and AIIMS Deoghar are taking steps to address the challenges facing these communities.
The summit included panel discussions on topics such as improving access to healthcare in remote tribal areas, addressing cultural barriers to healthcare, and leveraging technology to improve healthcare outcomes.
Dr (Prof.) N. K. Arora, AIIMS Deoghar President, stated,
As a premier medical institution in the country, AIIMS Deoghar is committed to improving the health and well-being of all communities, including tribal communities. We are delighted to partner with ECHO India to host this important event.
Dr Saurabh Varshney, AIIMS Deoghar Executive Director, said,
We at AIIMS Deoghar understand that tribal communities have long faced significant challenges in accessing healthcare services. The unique cultural and geographical characteristics of these communities often create barriers to accessing healthcare, resulting in poor health outcomes. Through this nationwide summit, we aim to identify innovative solutions that can help improve healthcare access and outcomes for tribal communities across the country. We hope to collaborate with other experts and stakeholders to develop sustainable strategies that address the root causes of these challenges and pave the way for better health outcomes for tribal communities.
Dr Varshney also highlighted that AIIMS Deoghar, as part of Unnat Bharat Abhiyan, has adopted five tribal villages and is conducting health promotion activities using telemedicine services. AIIMS faculty is researching tribal health to identify gaps and opportunities for health promotion and have submitted 14 research proposals to the Ministry of Tribal Affairs for approval and funding, including one for a Centre of Excellence in sickle cell disease. AIIMS Deoghar is also establishing a satellite center to expand its reach and serve the needs of surrounding tribal populations.
According to Dr Col Kumud Rai, Chairman of ECHO India,
As an organization, we are committed to improving healthcare outcomes for all through capacity building, especially for the underserved like tribal communities. By leveraging the expertise of policymakers, healthcare providers, and other stakeholders, we hope to create a roadmap for improving healthcare access and outcomes for tribal communities, and ultimately help to build a more equitable healthcare system in India.
The summit proved to be an insightful and informative platform for discussing the current state of healthcare in tribal areas and exploring new ways to enhance healthcare outcomes for these marginalized communities. Expert panellists from states with sizable tribal populations, including Bihar, Odisha, Chhattisgarh, Jharkhand, and Madhya Pradesh, shared their valuable inputs, which will be incorporated into a detailed report to pave the roadmap for enhancing healthcare outcomes in tribal communities.
(This story has not been edited by NDTV staff and is published from a syndicated feed.)
NDTV – Dettol have been working towards a clean and healthy India since 2014 via the Banega Swachh India initiative, which is helmed by Campaign Ambassador Amitabh Bachchan. The campaign aims to highlight the inter-dependency of humans and the environment, and of humans on one another with the focus on One Health, One Planet, One Future – Leaving No One Behind. It stresses on the need to take care of, and consider, everyone’s health in India – especially vulnerable communities – the LGBTQ population, indigenous people, India’s different tribes, ethnic and linguistic minorities, people with disabilities, migrants, geographically remote populations, gender and sexual minorities. In wake of the current COVID-19 pandemic, the need for WASH (Water, Sanitation and Hygiene) is reaffirmed as handwashing is one of the ways to prevent Coronavirus infection and other diseases. The campaign will continue to raise awareness on the same along with focussing on the importance of nutrition and healthcare for women and children, fight malnutrition, mental wellbeing, self care, science and health, adolescent health & gender awareness. Along with the health of people, the campaign has realised the need to also take care of the health of the eco-system. Our environment is fragile due to human activity, which is not only over-exploiting available resources, but also generating immense pollution as a result of using and extracting those resources. The imbalance has also led to immense biodiversity loss that has caused one of the biggest threats to human survival – climate change. It has now been described as a “code red for humanity.” The campaign will continue to cover issues like air pollution, waste management, plastic ban, manual scavenging and sanitation workers and menstrual hygiene. Banega Swasth India will also be taking forward the dream of Swasth Bharat, the campaign feels that only a Swachh or clean India where toilets are used and open defecation free (ODF) status achieved as part of the Swachh Bharat Abhiyan launched by Prime Minister Narendra Modi in 2014, can eradicate diseases like diahorrea and the country can become a Swasth or healthy India.