Discuss about the “Village Health Sanitation and Nutrition Committee” initiated by Govt. of Assam .
Ans : Village Health Sanitation and Nutrition Committee :-
The “Village Health Sanitation and Nutrition Committee (VHSNC)” play a vital role in implementing the major initiatives that are planned through the “Village Health Plan” . It can also be considered as a platform through which all the identified village level needs are fulfilled. Presently the State is having a total of about 27,673 nos. of VHSNCs who are contributing for addressing the issues related to health and its social determinants of the community.
One of the key elements of the National Health Mission (NHM) is the Village Health Sanitation and Nutrition committee (VHSNC). The committee has been formed to take collective actions on issues related to health and its social determinants at the village level. They are particularly envisaged as being central to “local level community action” under NHM, which would develop to support the process of “Decentralized Health Planning” . Thus, the committee is envisaged to take leadership in providing a platform for improving health awareness and access of community for health services, address specific local needs and serve as a mechanism for community based planning and monitoring. The committee is formed at the revenue village level and it act as a sub-committee of the Gram Panchayat.
Generally , each VHSNC have a strength of 12-15 members where the Panchayati Raj Institution (PRI) members plays the role of the president and Accredited Social Health Activist (ASHA) is the convenor or member secretary of the concerned VHSNC. Each of the VHSNC is granted with an untied fund of Rs 10000/- every financial year for mitigating the village level needs that are drawn through village health plan.
The VHSNC members are also been trained on the “Hand book of VHSNC members” to make them understand about the relevant guidelines for smooth functioning of the VHSNC. They have also been oriented on the maintenance of the cash book and vouchers for each of the activity that the committee perform.
Conclusion :- Assam is the most populous state from the NorthEastern region comprising of nearly 70% population of the entire region of 7 States also known as Seven Sisters. The State, with over 3 crore population as per the Census 2011 data, has nearly 86% population residing in rural areas and only around 14% population in urban areas. Therefore , to strengthen the health scenario at rural level , the “Village Health Sanitation and Nutrition Committee “ was started by Govt. The PRI members and ASHAs have to play an important role for the success of the VHSNC .