Bangladesh Governmet Activities December 2012

Ministry of Health & Family Welfare

Bangladesh was awarded the best prize from GAVI Alliance for routine Immunization

Professor Dr. A. F. M Ruhal Haque MP, the Health and Family Welfare Minister, and the member of the Board of GAVI Alliance representing Bangladesh in GAVI Alliance Partners Forum, a mega event of the child health and immunization folks which was held in Dares Salaam, the capital city of Tanzania during December 4 to 7, 2012. The main theme of this year partners forum was "Rising to the challenge" with regard to immunization.

On 6 December in a grand ceremony, Bangladesh has been awarded the best prize for the extraordinary success in routine immunization program and sustaining high coverage overcoming many challenges. Health Minister received the prize on behalf of Bangladesh Government from GAVI alliance. The ceremony was attended by the First Ladies of Tanzania, Health Ministers, top officials of UNICEF, WHO, UNFPA, and the leading development agencies of the world.

Bangladesh Health Minister as a panelist in the country driven immunization program delivered a key note on "Country Driven Immunization Program: Reflections from Bangladesh." He also spoke in a high profile workshop of "Technology Transfer for Vaccine" on 7 December.

Bangladesh Health Minister had a bilateral meeting with the Health and Social Services Minister of Tanzania, Dr. Hussain Ali Mwiney. Tanzian Minister has expressed his interest to receive doctors and other health workers from Bangladesh to support their health service. Bangladesh Health Minister emphasized for Pharmaceutical import from Bangladesh to Tanzania in the meeting.

After the ceremony, Health Minister AFM Ruhal Haque announced in a press conference that govt. will provide Pneumonia vaccine to all under five children from 2013. Every year five thousand children under five are dying from pneumonia. He also mentioned that at present total 1 lakh 34 thousand 684 immunization centers are active. He also mentioned thatto prevent diarrhea “Rota Virus” vaccine will be brought in Bangladesh soon. In 2001 the full immunization rate was 52 % and in 2011 it was 80.2%. This is a great achievement. This was the second GAVI award of Bangladesh

Aponjon opens cell phone health service in BD

Health Minister Dr AFM Ruhul Haque and Richard Greene, Mission Director of the US Agency for International Development (USAID), inaugurated the national scale-up of ‘Aponjon’, the first nation-wide mobile phone health information service in Bangladesh on 18 December 2012. The Mobile Alliance for Maternal Action (MAMA) announced the national launch of 'Aponjon', a mobile health (mHealth) service delivering critical stage-based information with plans to reach two million people, including pregnant women, new mothers and their families, by 2015. The launch was held at the Osmani Memorial Hall in Dhaka, Bangladesh, where many public and private sector partners and supporters celebrated the expansion of the service.

The service will provide weekly health messages to expecting and new mothers to encourage proper care during pregnancy and after the baby is born.

The low-cost service, free for the poorest 20 % of its subscribers, aims to reduce maternal and newborn illnesses and deaths. USAID, through its implementing partner D. Net, helps Aponjon to quickly and efficiently distribute important health information to pregnant women about proper care for themselves and for their young babies.

The messages will dispel common misconceptions, inform expecting and new mothers of potential health dangers and warning signs, help them find local healthcare services and explain the advantages of family planning. During the pilot phase of this program over the past year, the service reached more than 1,600 new and expectant mothers. Beginning now, the service will scale-up nationwide, eventually reaching more than three million women and family members by 2015.

Beneficiaries in the poorest communities in remote areas will receive the service free of cost. The service design of Aponjon includes not only pregnant and new mothers, but other key decision-makers in the family such as husbands, mothers and mothers-in-laws. Bangladesh, India, and South Africa were selected as priority countries under MAMA and, of these three countries, Bangladesh is the first to take mobile health messaging services to national scale under Aponjon.

Family Planning, Mother and Child Health care week celebrated

On 29 December 2012 the event began. The publicity program will be observed up to 3 January in the whole country by the health ministry and related organizations. Caravan from a root on northeastside (Sylhet) to southwest side (satkhira) and   from westnorth side (Ponchagarh) to southeast side (coxsbazar) for the different awareness program will be organized. Besides the mother and child healthcare programs other programs will be there.

Health minister Prof. Dr. A.F.M RuhalHaque, State minister Dr. Captain (Retd) Mujibur Rahman Fakir, Health secretary Md. Humayun Kabir, Director general of family planning  A K M Amir Hossain, Director (IEM) Gonesh Chandra Sarker, Channel I director Shaik Shiraj inaugurated the program by riding in the caravan.  Funded by UNFPA health ministry organized the program and media partner was Channel I. The health minister said the program has not reached in some remote area of the country so the week is to overcome these weaknesses.

Ministry of Agriculture

Initiatives to build seed extension and processing center

To build seed extension and processing center in Noakhali, Subornochar Upazila   an initiative has been taken. Faridunnahar Laily MP, Relief &Social Welfare secretary visited the project area as a representative of agriculture minister,  Matia Chowdhury,  along with Bangladesh Agriculture  Development Corporation (BADC)   chairman and  senior officers on 18 December 2012.

Ministry of Food and Disaster Management

Thailand cooperation in food security of Bangladesh

Thailand will keep their cooperation in food security of Bangladesh  said Thai business minister  Boonsong Teriyapirom in a meeting  with Food minister  Dr. Abdur Razzak  on 22 December 2012  at the hotel Sonargoan Lounge. In the meeting it was decided to extend the time of last year’s memorandum of understanding among the two countries. Last year Bangladesh import 2 lakh 50 thousand metric ton rice. Thailand is advanced in food processing. The lack of food processing facility in Bangladesh is the cause of damaging agricultural products and that’s why farmers are not getting proper price. Thailand govt can help in this sector. Thailand will provide 10 lakh ton of rice to Bangladesh according to the memorandum.