The Ministry of Health and Family Welfare (MoHFW) has launched the National Sickle Cell Anaemia Elimination Mission (NSCEM) on 1st July, 2023. A press release was issued on the launch by the Ministry.
The National Sickle Cell Anemia Elimination Mission takes a comprehensive approach towards combating sickle cell disease as the impact of a disease is not felt by the patient alone, but by the whole family. NSCEM combines both screening and awareness strategies to ensure early detection and treatment while promoting education about the disease.
The Guidelines for Sickle Cell Anaemia Elimination Mission were also released at the event. Training Modules for primary, secondary, and tertiary care including medical officers, staff nurses, Community Health Officers, Auxiliary Nurse Midwives, and Accredited Social Health Activist workers were also published.
The event also launched the distribution of about 3.57 crore digital cards to Ayushman Bharat Pradhan Mantri Jan Arogya Yojana (AB-PMJAY) beneficiaries, with 1 crore cards being distributed physically to the beneficiaries in Madhya Pradesh.
Sickle cell disease (SCD) is a chronic single gene disorder causing a debilitating systemic syndrome characterized by chronic anemia, acute painful episodes, organ infarction and chronic organ damage and by a significant reduction in life expectancy. Implemented in 17 high-focus states across the country, this program aims to improve the care and prospects of all sickle cell disease patients while reducing the prevalence of the disease. The 17 states are Gujarat, Maharashtra, Rajasthan, Madhya Pradesh, Jharkhand, Chhattisgarh, West Bengal, Odisha, Tamil Nadu, Telangana, Andhra Pradesh, Karnataka, Assam, Uttar Pradesh, Kerala, Bihar, and Uttarakhand.
The program is executed in a mission mode as part of the National Health Mission (NHM), aims to eliminate sickle cell genetic transmission by the year 2047.
Over a period of three years, spanning from the fiscal year 2023-24 to 2025-26, the program targets screening approximately 7.0 crore people.