Thalassemia Bal Sewa Yojna | UPSC
Dr. Harsh Vardhan launches second phase of “Thalassemia Bal Sewa Yojna” for underprivileged Thalassemic patients
WHY IN NEWS:
It aims to provide a one-time cure opportunity for Haemoglobinopathies like Thalassaemia and Sickle Cell Disease for patients who have a matched family donor.
SYLLABUS COVERED: GS 3: Scheme
For PRELIMS it is important to understand the aim , funding pattern and the eligibility criteria of this scheme .
For MAINS go through the one time curative approach . You should be well versed with transplantation by the end of this scheme . Let us dive in !
THALASSEMIA BAL SEWA YOJNA
- Hematopoietic Stem Cell Transplantation (HSCT) today offers an alternative to lifelong transfusion.
- It is a useful therapy especially in chelation (removing certain heavy metals from the bloodstream) for patients with thalassemia major.
- A bone marrow transplant is a onetime curative approach which has a 70 to 95% chance of success.
- That patient is now alive and well into 35 years post-transplant.
- However the procedure is associated with risk of infection, regimen related toxicity, graft versus host disease and relapse.
- Accurate data on the prevalence of thalassemia in India is not available but it is believed that there are 20 million carriers.
- There are nearly 10-12,000 children are born every year with thalassemia major in India.
- The standard management is regular transfusion and chelation which has to be continued as long as the child is alive.
- Most of the parents cannot sustain this for logistical reasons and cost.
- Only 20-30% of patients who have a matched sibling donor can afford to have a transplant.
HEMATOPOIETIC STEM CELL TRANSPLANTATION (HSCT)
The outcome of Hematopoietic Stem Cell Transplantation (HSCT) for thalassemia major depends on several factors other than the type of donor.
- Age of the patient
- Risk category of the patient based on adequacy of iron chelation and resultant liver damage
- However, even older children now have successful transplant in 75-85% of cases if carefully managed.
- The cost of HSCT varies depending on age / weight of the patient and the complications that may occur.
OBJECTIVE : THALASSEMIA BAL SEWA YOJNA
- Thalassemia Bal Sewa Yojna” is intended to provide a onetime cure opportunity.
- It is for those patients who have a suitable matched family donor.
- They are therefore eligible for bone marrow transplantation but do not have the financial resources to cover the cost of the procedure.
- It is suggested that no Physician’s fee be charged for patients transplanted within this scheme.
- The financial assistance would be provided on a first come first serve basis with preference given to children under 7.
- The CSR initiative was targeted to provide financial assistance to a total of 200 patients.
- This will be by providing a package cost not exceeding Rs. 10 lakhs per HSCT.
- Ministry of health and Family Welfare will facilitate identification of entity/entities /patients and potential donors.
- The Patients approaches the transplant centers directly.
- Patients whose yearly family income is Rs. 5 lakhs and or less .
- Such patients must be other than Class III B patients .
- Data on the prevalence of silent carriers for various Haemoglobinopathies show that it is 2.9-4.6% for β-Thalassemia,
- It can be as high as 40% for sickle cell anaemia especially among the tribal population.
- Haemoglobin variants like HBE in eastern India can be as common as 3-50% which calls for more attention to these diseases.