The Bihar Health Department has been distributing contraceptives, condoms among migrant workers who are going to their homes after completing 14-day institutional quarantine and those under home quarantines, a health official confirmed on Tuesday.
Health coordinators are distributing two packets of condoms at quarantine centres, while ASHA workers have been handing them out during door-to-door screening of people under home quarantine.
An official of Care India said the NGO is providing technical support to the Bihar health department in this initiative.
Until now, 28 to 29 lakh migrant workers have returned to the state, out of which, 8.77 lakh people have been discharged as they have completed their 14 day quarantine period.
“Migrant labourers are going to their homes after completing the 14-day institutional quarantine. Since there are chances of unwanted pregnancies, we properly counsel them and give them tools (such as condoms) to avoid unwanted pregnancy,” a senior Health department official told PTI.
“As a health professional, it is our responsibility to control the population. We have been taking the support of our health partner Care India to implement the initiative.”
The official said that there has been a sudden surge in the cases of unwanted pregnancies, throughout the world, during the lockdown and it was against this backdrop that the initiative was launched. The initiative will continue till the quarantine centres are functioning, the health official added.
Bihar government closes migrants workers’ registration or quarantine
The Bihar government has, however, announced, that from today, June 2 (Tuesday), migrant workers returning to Bihar will not be registered for placing the into institutional quarantine. Those who returned to the state till Monday had been registered and quarantined in more than 5,000 centres, which together host around 13 lakh migrants. These centres will be closed after June 15, when the 14-day quarantine of the last batch of registered migrants ends.
“We have carried out the biggest-ever evacuation exercise by bringing back over 30 lakh migrants. We are closing registration on Monday evening. In any case, maximum people have returned,” said Pratyaya Amrit, principal secretary at Bihar’s Disaster Management Authority. Amrit said door-to-door health monitoring would continue, and that medical facilities would remain the same from primary health centres to Level I and Level II hospitals.