Pregnant women deprived of 4 ANC incentive

HETAUDA: Pregnant women visiting Hetauda Hospital have been deprived of the incentive declared by the government for completing four antenatal checkups (ANCs) during the course of pregnancy.

As per the Safe Motherhood Programme launched by Family Health Division under the Ministry of Health, pregnant women on completion of the four stipulated ANCs are eligible to receive Rs 400 to motivate them, and to ensure maternal and child safety during pregnancy and birth.

Hetauda Hospital in Makawanpur has halted the distribution of this motivational incentive since January.

Account officer at the hospital, Madhu Kumar Dhungana, stated that the incentive money was not being distributed due to lack of budget.

Chief at Hetauda Hospital, Dr Kamal Dawadi, said that he was unaware about the incentive not being distributed and would inquire at the accounts department regarding the issue.

However, the hospital has been distributing Rs 1,000 as transportation allowance to new mothers for delivering their child at a health institution, which has also been provisioned by the government under the same programme.

As many as 1,026 women have received the transportation allowance for delivering in Hetauda Hospital from January up until July 5,  despite not receiving the ANC incentive. A total of Rs 410,400 under the ANC incentive has not been distributed during this period.

On the other hand, Bhimphedi Rural Municipality in Makawanpur, on Tuesday, has distributed motivational incentive to pregnant women through its own initiative. The rural municipality distributed Rs 2,000 each to 42 women under their women-focused programme for 2074/75.

Prior to this, the rural municipality had also provided with Rs 1,000 as transportation allowance to women who delivered at a health facility and Rs 400 to women who completed the four ANCs, under the central government's programme.