ITANAGAR, Feb 9 (PTI): Over 8,000 children in remote Kurung Kumey district of Arunachal Pradesh are not likely to be covered under the measles catch-up campaign (MCC), a flagship programme of the Centre to eradicate the highly infectious disease and reduce its mortality, due to lack of roads and connectivity.
With hardly 22 km road per 100 sq km against the average of 52 km in North-east and national average of 73 km and still many villages beyond reach for want of connectivity, the district may fail in achieving the target of the ongoing MCC, which is likely to be launched in the district from March 6, official sources said here today.
Living on hill tops, slopes and inaccessible areas of Damin, Tali, Pipsorang circles and Milli and Polosang villages of Sarli circle, the children would be deprived and the mission unaccomplished unless helicopters are pressed into service to transport the medical team to the far-flung locations, sources said.
Highlighting the communication problem, a Damin Primary Health Center (PHC) Medical Officer, during a training-cum-meeting of the district task force on MCC and IPP at Koloriang recently, said, �It would be impossible to conduct MCC in Damin, Tali, Pipsorang circles and Milli and Polosang villages of Sarli circle unless the medical teams are provided with airlifting facility as the vaccines have to be kept in cold temperature, which is not possible in these far-flung areas without roads and electricity.�
�Both backward districts of Kurung Kumey and East Kameng are yet to complete the campaign while the remaining 13 districts have completed it, Health and Family Welfare Director Dr Karthik Nishing told PTI today.
Interestingly, salt is sold at Rs 140 per kg in Pip-Sorang and Tali administrative centres in the backward district because of the steep hilly terrain, where the first Circle Officer Dana Raha had reached in 2008 after trekking for three days.
The Himalayan State with over 13.82 lakh population as per 2011 Census and a density of 17 per sq km, is divided into 15 medical districts. It targets 2,34,306 children under the MCC.
In all 2,18,291 in the age group of 9 months to 10 years have been covered under so far, according to official data.