Nalgonda Fluorosis pathways

By Vikas Ratanjee
Trying to see how better systems can be created for monitoring the problem's extent
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Fluorosis mitigation efforts In Nalgonda have a history attached to them, Nalgonda being the first place in the country where Fluorosis was discovered it puzzles many as to why solutions have not moved forward the way they should have.

It’s been a lot of things that have been tried but not much seems to have happened

It was in 2013 that on the initiative of the Assembly speaker an MLA team visited Nalgonda to assess the situation through a field visit and decided that something needs to be done

And hence came about a government department;  the District Fluoride Mitigation Center  (DFMC), assigned with the mammoth task of monitoring the work of 17 line departments on Fluorosis mitigation. The UNICEF has been an able partner to this initiative under the overall patronage of the District Collector and so has the National Institute for Nutrition (NIN) www.ninindia.org

In December 2014, Mr. Srinivas Chekuri, Consultant to the program from UNICEF came forward to the Fluoride Knowledge and Action Network with a request to help the District Fluoride Monitoring center in their effort to mitigate Fluorosis.

As a result of these developments, the Fluoride Knowledge and Action Network,  UNICEF,  DFMC and NIN came together for sharing cross learnings and exploring possibilities with each other through a consultation meeting as well as a exposure visit to the field that were held on the 3rd of December 2014.

What emerged  after these deliberations was a desire for the Fluoride Network  to support the District Fluoride Monitoring Center with expertise on improving DFMC’s monitoring  systems and building capacity on tacklingg Fluorosis.

In the meanwhile Arghyam Foundation, Bangalore also expressed an interest in supporting such an initiative.

Taking clue a select group of  Fluoride network members came together in Bengaluru on January the 29th to discuss what role each could play and how they could all contribute to the emerging Nalgonda collaborative.

The flurry of activities preceeding the consultation meeting also included an intern through the Fluoride Network going to Nalgonda and observing what systems are in place right now and whats been happening at DFMC to get an initial sense about how the Nalgonda collaborative could move ahead

The Nalgonda collaborative of the Fluoride network is now underway and we hope this shows a path of light to other affected regions of the country

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