Vice President Urge For A Comprehensive Approach To Address The Challenge Of Thalassemia

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Vice President Urge For A Comprehensive Approach To Address The Challenge Of Thalassemia
Vice President Urge For A Comprehensive Approach To Address The Challenge Of Thalassemia

July 14

Gene disorders are a major health concern in our country and impose a heavy economic and emotional burden on the affected families. Statistics show that hemoglobin disorders are the most common single-gene disorder, impacting around seven percent of the population globally. In India, the prevalence of beta- Thalassemia is estimated to be in the range of 2.9 to 4.6 % whereas sickle cell anemia is more prevalent among lower socio-economic sections of society, ranging from 5 to 40 % among the tribal populations, said Vice President M.Venkaiah Naidu.

Addressing a gathering after inaugurating the Research Laboratory, Advanced Diagnostic Laboratory and 2nd Blood Transfusion Unit at the Thalassemia and Sickle Cell Society (TSCS) in Hyderabad today, the Vice President urged the private sector and NGOs to complement the government’s efforts in combating genetic diseases. Recognizing that the available treatment options for these genetic conditions– bone marrow transplantation or regular blood transfusion – are cost intensive and distressing to the child, Shri Naidu called for a comprehensive approach to address the health challenge of Thalassemia and sickle cell anemia.

He said, ‘Our focus must be on preventive measures. As you all are aware, marriage between two such silent carriers of defective genes may lead to serious genetic disorders among their children. Mass screening for silent carriers of defective genes of children at an early age will greatly help in detecting genetic disorders’.

Also, Vice President advocated for a comprehensive approach to address this health challenge of Thalassemia.

Speaking on Union Ministry’s effort for prevention and management of Thalassemia,  Sickle cell anemia and other variant anemia, Vice President said, ‘The Union Health Ministry has prepared and issued detailed guidelines for prevention and management of Thalassemia,  Sickle cell anemia and other variant anemia. The guidelines provide for screening of every pregnant woman during Ante-natal care, pre-marital counseling at the college level and one- time screening for variant anemia for all children in class VIII’.

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‘Despite these efforts, unfortunately, around 10-15 thousand babies are born every year with Thalassemia in India. Lack of awareness on these genetic diseases is a major impediment in their prevention and early diagnosis’, M.Venkaiah Naidu.

As children affected with Thalassemia need regular blood transfusions and management throughout their life, access to safe quality blood for transfusion is a major challenge in their care and treatment. Vice President urge the youth of our country to come forward and donate blood for the needy.

 

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