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Centre for infant treatment training

Doctors and nurses will get training on how to treat infants to reduce the infant mortality rate in the state.

Chief minister Jitan Ram Manjhi inaugurated a state apex resource centre (SARC) at Nalanda Medical College and Hospital (NMCH) on August 16 under the Norway India Partnership Initiative (NIPI).

The project — support to improving administrative efficiency for delivering newborn and infant healthcare services — aims to reduce neonatal and infant mortality by strengthening capacities and improving access of health services.

It would initially be launched in Jehanabad, Nalanda and Sheikhpura.

NMCH, paediatrics, head of department Arun Kumar Thakur, said: “SARC will function under the neonatal intensive care unit at NMCH. The project entails training of doctors and nurses of special newborn care units in the three districts. It also involves training of medical officers and doctors of newborn care corners at primary health centres.”

“The weeklong programme will help provide effective treatment to the infants, reducing the mortality rate. Bihar’s infant mortality rate is 43 per 1,000 live births against the national average of 42 per 1,000 live births,” he added. The training team will consist of a NIPI staff, a NMCH doctor assigned to the district concerned and two nurses from Kerala.

NIPI completed its first phase of operation in 2012 in Madhya Pradesh, Odisha, Bihar and Rajasthan. The Rs 304-crore ($50 million) project’s second phase was launched in 2013.