What is Pneumonia?
- Pneumonia is an infection that inflames the air sacs in one or both lungs.
- The air sacs may fill with fluid or pus, causing cough with phlegm or pus, fever, chills, and difficulty breathing.
- A variety of organisms, including bacteria, viruses and fungi, can cause pneumonia.
- Pneumonia can range in seriousness from mild to life-threatening.
- It is most serious for infants and young children, people older than age 65, and people with health problems or weakened immune systems.
- The germs that cause pneumonia are contagious. Both viral and bacterial pneumonia can spread to others through inhalation of airborne droplets from a sneeze or cough. One can contract fungal pneumonia from the environment. However, it doesn’t spread from person to person.
- Vaccines are available to prevent some types of pneumonia and the flu.
- As per Sample Registration System Report (2010-13) of Registrar General of India, Pneumonia contributes 16.9% of infant deaths and it is the 2nd highest cause of infant mortality.
- As per Health Management Information System (HMIS) data, under-five mortality rate in the country is 37 per 1000 live births, of which 5.3 deaths are caused due to pneumonia.
- The government aims to achieve a target of reducing pneumonia deaths among children to less than three per 1,000 live births by 2025.
- SAANS stands for “Social Awareness and Actions to Neutralize Pneumonia Successfully”. It is an initiative launched in 2019 in order to accelerate actions for reducing deaths due to childhood Pneumonia.
- The aim is to mobilise people to protect children from pneumonia, and train health personnel and other stakeholders to provide prioritised treatment to control the disease.
- The SAANS initiative encompasses three pronged strategies
- Guidelines on treatment and management of childhood Pneumonia including introduction of use of Amoxicillin by Auxiliary nurse midwife(ANM).
- Capacity building of service providers for identification and standardized management of Pneumonia.
- Communication campaign to ensure greater awareness of childhood Pneumonia among families and parents.
Why in the news?
- The Union Minister of State for Health and Family Welfare provided details about the SAANS campaign recently.