Bai Jerbai Wadia Hospital for Children (BJWHC), India’s first and largest Paediatric hospital in association with UNICEF formally inaugurated the Nutrition Rehabilitation Centre facility at BJWHC.
The inauguration was presided by Chief guest, Mr Jim Morris, United States Representative on the Executive Board of the United National Children’s Fund (UNICEF) along with Mrs. Rajeshwari Chandrasekar, Chief of UNICEF Field Office for Maharashtra, Mr. Ness Wadia, Trustee, Wadia Hospitals, Dr. Minnie Bodhanwala, CEO, Wadia Hospitals and other dignitaries.
The state of the art Nutrition Rehabilitation Centre will address child survival and development with equity among the most deprived urban poor communities in and around Mumbai by providing advanced treatment support with a focus on early childhood development for children with Severe Acute Malnutrition at BJWHC. More than 250 SAM children will get holistic inpatient care at this facility every year. As part of this effort, UNICEF has been continuously offering technical and training support to staff members functioning in the hospital. This state of the art NRC plus unit will also establish itself as the centre for research. This centre would also become the training hub for health staff and field staff on management of children with SAM.
Child Under nutrition remains the biggest threat to child survival, growth and development despite significant development in the social and economic sector across the Country. It continues to be a huge public health challenge and future global prosperity and security are intimately linked with our ability to respond adequately to this urgent challenge. ‘The Lancet’ 2013 series shows that under nutrition contributes to the deaths of about 3 million children each year – 45% of the total mortality load of the under-fives.
Mr. Jim Morris, United States Representative on the Executive Board of the United National Children’s Fund (UNICEF) said,”Children should be healthy and not hungry, hunger and malnutrition cause serious health issue for children and adults everyday, no baby should struggle, there should be happiness in every babies eyes. BJWHC in association with UNICEF is doing a wonderful job towards this cause and I am privileged to be a part of this inauguration”.
He further added, “The work done by the hospital is so impressive, so good and thanked all for the work they are doing for the children from so many years”.
Mrs. Rajeshwari Chandrasekar, Chief of UNICEF Field Office for Maharashtra said, “UNICEF has partnered with Bai Jerbai Wadia Children’s hospital, a lead hospital for pediatric care for underprivileged in India for establishing state of the art nutrition rehabilitation centre for management of children with severe acute malnutrition. This hospital is providing mentoring and coaching support to improve the quality of services in infant and young child feeding and early childhood development. This partnership will contribute in improving the capacities of the institutions in the state in the area of child nutrition and will go a long way in the holistic development of the children.”
Mr. Ness Wadia, Trustee, Wadia Hospitals said, “We welcome and highly appreciate the role being played by UNICEF to address the issue and challenges with respect to Malnutrition. The centre of excellence established through partnership with UNICEF will provide much-needed encouragement to Bai Jerbai Wadia Hospital for Children in its resolve and commitment to provide the best treatment possible to children suffering from Severe Acute Malnutrition.”
Dr. Minnie Bodhanwala, Chief Executive Officer of the Wadia Hospitals said, “We are extremely delighted to formally inaugurate our Nutrition Rehabilitation Centre in association with UNICEF. Hunger and malnutrition have devastating consequences for children and have been linked to low birth weight and birth defect and poorer educational outcomes. We at BJWHC are highly committed towards this cause and this initiative takes us one step closer towards our goal of providing all services for children under one roof. We have an excellent team of medical staff who will take care of the children here and ensure they get a chance to laugh and learn like other kids around. We are very thankful to UNICEF for extending their support and look forward to further strengthening our partnership with them to improve child nutrition and early childhood development in India.”