300 Aanganwadi Sevika’s trained to spot symptoms of Congenital Heart Disease (CHD) amongst Children, at S.L Raheja Hospital – A Fortis Associate


~ With this initiative, S.L Raheja Hospital kicks off its Pediatric Cardiac program aimed at providing treatment to children with Congenital Heart Diseases ~

Congenital Heart Diseases (CHD) impact over 8 in every 1000 newborn children in India, the Paediatric Cardiac team at SL Raheja aims at effectively identifying, screening and providing corrective treatment to these children, in conjunction with socially responsible stakeholders. The program is based on the understanding that babies born with the congenital defect are subjected to various health complications later in life; many don’t even make it.


In its first leg, over 300 Aanganwadi Sevikas from the Brihanmumbai Municipal Corporation-G North Ward were engaged with over two days, through sessions on Congenital Heart Disease- its prevalence, identifying symptoms and ‘call for action’ steps to be taken. They were tutored to identify children with;

  • Difficult or unusually fast breathing
  • Bluish discoloration on the hands and lips
  • Loss of appetite
  • Poor health with no weight gain

Their parents would be counselled to consult a Pediatric Cardiologist and undergo a 2D Echo, free of cost, for which special arrangements have been made at the hospital. The two-day initiative was graced by Hon.Mrs. Shobha Shelar, Child Development Project Officer, Brihanmumbai Municipal Corporation, who leads the Aanganwadi program. These Sevikas who engage with over 4500 children on daily basis, will work as guardians of health by helping spot symptoms amongst their wards. Dr Bhushan Chavan, Pediatric Cardiologisthostedthis engaging session with the Sevikas.

Speaking about the initiative undertaken by the hospital, Dr Bipin Chevale, Zonal Director, SL Raheja Hospital, Mahim – A Fortis Associate said, “Awareness about CHD needs to be built amongst those who directly come in contact with children. The Aanganwadi project is such, where these Sevika’s work tirelessly to ensure malnourished kids receive the necessary nutrition they need. Dealing with over 4500 children, enables to identify those who likely stand at a risk. We are proud of this association that will help strengthen the cause of child health”.

Commemorating the initiative, Hon.Mrs. Shobha Shelar, Child Development Project Officer, Brihanmumbai Municipal Corporation, said, “Our association with the PaedCardiac Team at the hospital has empowered us with knowledge about Congenital Heart Diseases, it will help us work better as caregivers for the thousands of children we work with on a daily basis. Equipping our team with skills to tackle emergencies by deploying BLS and CPR, is definitely a huge plus”.

In its endeavor to diagnose the disease early, amongst the city’s children from disempowered backgrounds, the hospital also conducts a free 2D Echo test and Paediatric consultation, every Saturday, on its premises.

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