India has achieved replacement level fertility, with as many as 31 States/Union Territories reaching a Total Fertility Rate of 2.1 or less, Union Minister of State for Health and Family Welfare Dr. Bharati Pravin Pawar said on Wednesday.
Speaking at the National Family Planning Summit 2022, she said that between 2012 and 2020, India added more than 1.5 crore additional users for modern contraceptives thereby increasing their use substantially.
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The Minister said that government data shows an overall positive shift towards spacing methods which would be instrumental in impacting positively maternal and infant mortality and morbidity.
The Union Minister emphasised that Mission Parivar Vikas (MPV) 2016 has given further impetus to the National Family Planning Program. Under the scheme, innovative strategies like the distribution of Nayi Pehel kits, Saas Bahu Sammelan, and Saarthi vans are helping in reaching out to the community and initiating dialogues on Family Planning and healthy birth spacing, and the importance of small families. “More than 17 lakh Nayi Pehel kits have been distributed to newly-weds, over 7 lakh Saas bahu sammelans conducted, and over 32 lakh clients have been counselled through Saarthi vans since inception, ‘‘ she said.
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During the event, the Minister also unveiled the India Family Planning 2030 vision document and launched the Medical Eligibility Criteria (MEC) Wheel Application, E-Module of Family Planning Logistics Management System (FPLMIS), and Digital Archive on Family Planning under the category of Digital Intervention.
Dr. Pawar also introduced the National Family Planning helpline manual, Community Health Officer (CHO) booklet, and ASHA brochure and leaflet (Family Planning).
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Union Health Secretary Rajesh Bhushan stated that the Family Planning Programme in India is now over seven decades old, and in this period, India has witnessed a paradigm shift from the concept of population control to population stabilisation to interventions being embedded toward ensuring harmony of the continuum care.
“Although India has achieved replacement level fertility, there is still a significant population in the reproductive age group who must remain at the centre of our intervention efforts. India’s focus has traditionally been on the supply side, i.e. the providers and delivery systems but now it’s time to focus on the demand side which includes family, community and society. Significant change is possible with this focus, instead of an incremental change”, he noted.