Towards a Healthier India

Dear Readers,

Thank you for your continuous support. With your blessings and best wishes, your favoutite magazine Double Helical is growing by leaps and bounds to serve you a veritable feast of health news, views, research and development in the sector, month after month
In the current issue, our cover story entitled “Opportunities and Challenges” is on Ayushman Bharat, a very unique affordable healthcare step undertaken by the government headed by Prime Minister Narendra Modi. No doubt, Ayushman Bharat can be a game changer as it will provide health cover to 10 crore families. But this scheme should not become a victim of poor governance. A lot of thought process is required to go into its implementation. A robust system should be developed where resources available with both the public and the private sector are pooled, utilised and managed to achieve the desired goals.
Also known as Modicare, the scheme aims at making interventions in primary, secondary and tertiary care systems, covering both preventive and promotive health, to address healthcare holistically. It is an umbrella of two major health initiatives namely 1.5 lakh health & wellness centres (HWC) and National Health Protection Scheme (NHPS), launched in budget proposals for the year 2018-19.
The HWCs aim to bring promotional, preventive and primary healthcare system closer to the homes of people. These centres will provide comprehensive healthcare, including for non-communicable diseases and maternal and child health services. These centres will also provide free essential drugs and diagnostic services. Contribution of private sector through CSR and philanthropic institutions in adopting these centres is also envisaged.
As special story, we present an engrossing and informative story on Yoga. As we all know, traditional systems of healthcare goes a long way in achieving the harmony of body, mind, soul, emotions and intellect. If we wish to achieve Health for All, we need to make systems of complementary and alternative medicine a viable part of the contemporary treatment options.
But unfortunately, day by day health status of the people is declining despite the fact that there is remarkable advancement in the medical technology. The need is to have more health centres rather than nursing homes and hospitals. These health centre should educate the people to manage and maintain their health without dependence on medication. To cater to the health needs of the people in our country, prevention is the only solution. If we think on those lines, naturopathy could be the only answer.
Over a period of time, with the advancement of technology, these systems have evolved as a full-fledged scientific medical system. So much so that these systems are now being used as primary healthcare measures in public health. In fact, a number of research works have been done on these systems, acceptance of which by the conventional medical practitioners and general public has increased enormously.
The another special story on threat of hearing loss highlights long exposure to personal audio devices such as headphone and Smartphone at high levels which results in harmful effects leading even to noise-induced hearing loss. According to the World Health Organization (WHO), over 1.1 billion teenagers and young adults are at the risk of hearing loss due to smartphones, and exposure to damaging levels of sound at noisy entertainment venues such as nightclubs, bars and sporting events, Hearing loss has potentially devastating consequences for physical and mental health, education and employment.
Sound pressure is measured in decibels and exposure to 75dB is usually safe. However, long or repeated sounds at above 85dB can cause hearing loss. The louder the sound, the shorter the amount of time it takes for noise-induced hearing loss (NIHL) to happen. The WHO recommends that young people limit the use of personal audio players to one hour a day in an effort to limit exposure to noise. Although headphones are not sold with SPL meters, they can be purchased separately.
So, savour the January 2019 issue of Double Helical. You will love to read many more stories based on deep analysis and ground reporting with unique insight. Happy reading in the New Year 2019!

Amresh K Tiwary,

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