The people of East Kameng district in Arunachal Pradesh are availing extensively the benefits of ‘Pehli Sawari’, a newly-launched scheme of the Health Department and the district administration.
Launched with an objective to promote institutional delivery under the Shishu Suraksha Karyakram, Pehli Sawari is led by Deputy Commissioner Gaurav Singh Rajawat and entitles all pregnant women delivering in public health institutions and mothers with newborns free transport from home to the government health facility and vice versa before and after the delivery.
A dedicated vehicle has also been designated for the service.
The scheme is believed to be a first-of-its-kind service in the northeastern region and second in the country.
Pehli Sawari was launched in East Kameng on the 72nd Independence Day celebrations by local MLA Tapuk Taku.
About 67,000 women die in India every year due to pregnancy-related complications while around 13 lakh infants die within one year of birth.
Of the 9 lakh newborns that die within 4 weeks of birth, around 7 lakh die within the first week of their birth.
The first 28 days of infancy are very important for children. Both maternal and infant deaths can be reduced by ensuring timely access to public health facilities without any burden of out of pocket expenses.