ISSN - 0973-0958
   
 
Profile of Babies Admitted in Cradle Baby Scheme and Review of Female Infanticide in Dharmapuri
KS Kumaravel, B Rameshbabu, KV Pugalendhiraja, NR Karthick, S. Santhoshkumar.
Government Dharmapuri Medical College, Dharmapuri, Tamilnadu, India.
 
Abstract

Introduction: The spectrum of gender discrimination against female children in health care ranges from nutritional denial to cruel forms like female infanticide. The practice of female infanticide was seen particularly in South Asian countries. In the late 1980s, it reached dangerous levels in certain districts of Tamilnadu with a falling child sex ratio. To check the practice of female infanticide, the government of Tamilnadu launched Cradle Baby Scheme in the state. This study analyses the clinico-social profile of babies saved under the scheme and reviewed the current status of child sex ratio in Dharmapuri and the interventions done by the state government against female infanticide.
Methodology: This is a retrospective descriptive study done at Cradle Baby Reception Centre of Government Dharmapuri Medical College Hospital, Dharmapuri from the year Jan 2002 to Mar 2016.
Results: Out of the 1363 babies rescued, 192 (14.1%) were preterm, 1125 (88%) were of birth order of 3 and above and in 1226 (90%) of cases the girl baby was given to the scheme by the parents. Poverty and female sex of the baby were cited as the most common cause of abandoning. Thirty-four (2.5%) babies had congenital anomalies and sepsis and prematurity were the common morbidities seen. Seventy-two (5.2%) girls were taken back by the parents and 1286 (94.4%) girls were handed over to social welfare department from where they were given for adoption.
Conclusion: The Cradle baby Scheme of Government of Tamilnadu has saved 1363 girl babies in this centre. Similar interventional strategies should be planned across the country in areas with low Child Sex Ratio.
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