BHUBANESWAR: With the population bomb ticking, Odisha government is all set to introduce a new initiative under which newly married couples will be gifted a ‘wedding kit’ as part of population control measures.
The kit with a basket of choices for family planning will contain a booklet on methods and benefits of family planning, marriage registration form, condoms, oral contraceptive pills (OCPs) and emergency contraceptive pills (ECPs).
Most importantly, home pregnancy testing kit will also be part of the special gift pack along with a bride grooming kit comprising items like comb, bindi, nail cutter, mirror, handkerchief and towel among others. The ‘wedding kit’ is part of Nai Pahal Scheme under the National Health Mission (NHM), aimed at raising awareness about the need of adopting temporary and permanent methods of family planning by young couples.
State Mission Director of NHM Shalini Pandit said Odisha is the first State to launch the initiative despite having a low total fertility rate (TFR). The TFR of a population is the average number of children that would be born to a woman over her lifetime. The TFR of Odisha is 1.8 against the national average of two. The Accredited Social Health Activists (ASHAs) have been entrusted with the task of distributing kits to the newly-wed couples. Director of Family Planning Dr Bijay Panigrahy said ASHAs have been trained for gifting kits to all newly-weds in a proper manner and encouraging them to adopt family planning methods.
“The ASHAs will visit the houses where the wedding is taking place and gift the kit from September onwards. They, besides briefing the newly-weds about the spacing and limiting methods, will also keep a close watch on the benefit of the kit. They will get incentives,” Dr Panigrahy said.
Along with the contact details of ASHA, ANM and local health workers, the kit may have a wedding congratulatory message from the Chief Minister, the sources added. The Health department has also planned to strengthen delivery of new injectibe contraceptives to eligible couples and roll out family planning counselling and contraceptive services in all functional urban primary health centres.
Booklet on benefits of family planning, marriage registration form, condoms, oral contraceptive pills and emergency contraceptive pills
Home pregnancy testing kit will also be part along with a bride grooming kit