Ministry of Health and Family Welfare Current Affairs

Prime Minister’s Safe Motherhood Campaign: Madhya Pradesh awarded for reducing maternal mortality

Madhya Pradesh was awarded by Union Ministry of Health and Family Welfare for reducing maternal mortality under Prime Minister’s Safe Motherhood Campaign (Pradhan Mantri Surakshit Matritva Abhiyan-PMSMA). The state was awarded for registering unprecedented 48-digit decline in maternal deaths from 2014 to 2016 as per report of Registrar General of India (RGI).

Key Facts

The maternal mortality rate in Madhya Pradesh was 221 in 2011-13, which has now dropped down further to just 173. This accounts to significant 22% decline in the last three years in the state. State Government’s various awareness programmes like institutional delivery, Auxiliary Nursing Midwifery (ANM), Anganwadi workers, knock-out campaigns etc. have played pivotal role in reducing maternal mortality rate and this decline will be more noticeable in the coming years.

Pradhan Mantri Surakshit Matritva Abhiyan (PMSMA)

PMSMA or Prime Minister’s Safe Motherhood Campaign was launched by Ministry of Health and Family Welfare to provide free health check-ups to pregnant women at government health centres and hospitals in both rural and urban areas. It is national programme that aims to provide pregnant ladies free ante-natal services (ANC) and required treatment for free on 9th of every month. Private practitioners will play a critical role in supplementing the efforts of the Government.

Objectives of PMSMA 

  • Provide healthy life to the pregnant women.
  • Lowering the maternity mortality rate and infant mortality rate.
  • Making pregnant women aware of their health issues and diseases.
  • Making sure safe delivery and healthy life of the baby.

Intended Beneficiaries: The programme is applicable only for pregnant women in their pregnancy period of 3 to 6 months (i.e. in their 2nd and 3rd trimesters of pregnancy). It is expected to provide free antenatal care to about 3 crore pregnant women across the country.

Facilities: The programme will provide assured, comprehensive and quality antenatal care on 9th of every month (fixed day). Under it all kinds of medical checkups are provided completely free to pregnant women. Besides, free checkups including blood pressure, sugar level, weight, haemoglobin test, blood test and screening will be also provided. These checkups can take place at medical centres, government and private hospitals and private clinics across the country.

Colour Coding: One of the critical components of this programme is mark women differently using different colour stickers based on their health problems so that doctors can easily detect the problem. Women will be marked differently using different colour stickers based on their health problems so that doctors can easily detect the problem. Red Sticker for women with high risk pregnancy, Green Sticke for women with no risk factor detected.


Government bans oxytocin hormone to curb misuse

The Union Ministry of Health and Family Welfare has banned manufacture and sale of Oxytocin drug formulations for domestic use in private sector to prevent its misuse from 1st July 2018. Its import also has been banned. It also has not allowed retail or wholesale chemists to stock this drug in their shops in any form or name. Jenceforth, Karnataka Antibiotics & Pharmaceuticals Ltd will only manufacture the drug and supply it directly to registered private and public hospitals.


Oxytocin, often called love hormone, is released naturally in human bonding activities such as childbirth , breastfeeding and sex,. It is uterine stimulant hormone, prescribed for initiation of uterine contractions and induction of labour in women as well as stimulation of contractions during labour. It is also used to help abort fetus in cases of incomplete abortion or miscarriage, and control bleeding after childbirth. It may be used for breast engorgement.


It has become controversial hormonal injection that is misused widely in the dairy industry, agriculture and horticulture. The drug’s abuse in dairy animals to make them release milk at a time convenient to farmers, shortens their lives and makes them barren sooner. The hormone is also used to increase size of vegetables such as pumpkins, watermelons, brinjals, gourds and cucumbers. Even its misuse is reported among trafficked children, injected to accelerate puberty among girls. It is also being misused to speed up deliveries for pregnant women in overcrowded government hospitals.