Raipur: Chhattisgarh has become the first state to implement the ‘point of care test’ for confirmation of sickle cell anemia in patients living in the remote areas of the state.
Health minister TS Singh Deo launched the pilot project for this in the five districts of the state on Friday. Now the sickle cell anemia will be identified by grassroots-level health workers even in remote and far-flung villages of the state. The villagers will no longer have to travel long distances to reach hospitals to get themselves tested.
Health workers will be trained by experts of the ICMR-Institute of Immunohematology (IIH) Mumbai for this project being launched in five districts of the state including Durg, Surguja, Dantewada, Korba, and Mahasamund. The PCT technique used for this test is certified by international and national scientific institutions.
With this technique, the sickle cell disease can be tested and confirmed at village level only and also in Primary Healthcare Centers (PHCs). This will reduce mortality from sickle cell disease. A timely examination of pregnant women will also help in reducing maternal and neonatal mortality. Currently, the latest medicines for the sickle cell are available so that the patient can lead a normal life.
The state health department has conducted large scale screening across the state to identify suspected cases of sickle cell anemia in the last two years. Over 1.03 lakh people have been identified during the screening who are being provided with the necessary medicines and treatment, the health officials said.
TS Singh Deo wrote on his official Twitter handle “It is a matter of great pleasure that Chhattisgarh has become the first state in the country to connect sickle cell disease management with new testing techniques, this technology will prove to be beneficial for testing sickles in remote areas”.