New Delhi, Jan 19 (IANS) The Union Health Ministry on Friday said checkups under the Pradhan Mantri Surakshit Matritva Abhiyan (PMSMA) launched in 2016 for quality pregnancy checkups on the ninth of every month have reached the one crore-mark.

Thanking Prime Minister Narendra Modi for his support, Union Minister of Health and Family Welfare J.P. Nadda said: "More than one crore antenatal check-ups have been conducted under the ambitious PMSMA.

"Now safe pregnancy has become a social movement in our country."

Stressing that the programme has been successful in reaching out to the difficult and remote areas, Nadda said of the one crore checkups across the country, more than 25 lakh were conducted in high-priority districts identified by the Health Ministry for focussed attention.

"While all states and union territories have made significant efforts to reach out to pregnant women, Maharashtra has reported the largest number of check-ups among the Non-Empowered Action Group states and Rajasthan has reported the largest number of check-ups among the Empowered Action Group states," said Nadda.

Under the programme, all pregnant women visiting the PMSMA sites are examined by an obstetrician or physician.

Appreciating the doctors and health workers, Nadda also cited the example of Pooja Upadhyay, a well-known gynecologist of Raipur who turned down the travel support offered by the government and, instead, travelled all the way to Maoism-affected affected Narayanpur at her own expenses.

"Comprehensive and quality ANC, and identification and follow-up of high risk pregnancies are critical components of the Abhiyan.

"In order to enable early detection of high risk pregnancies, 84 lakh haemoglobin tests, 55 lakh HIV tests, 41 lakh tests for gestational diabetes, 33 lakh tests for syphilis and more than 15 lakh ultrasounds have been conducted under the programme based on the individual requirements of pregnant women," said Nadda.

He said based on the clinical conditions and investigations, over 5.50 lakh pregnant women were identified with high risk pregnancies and referred to a specialist or a higher health facility for appropriate care.

--IANS

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