The Reproductive and Child Health (RCH) Programme was launched throughout the country on 15th October, 1997. This programme aimed at achieving a status in which women will be able to regulate their fertility, women will be able to go through their pregnancy and child birth safely, the outcome of pregnancies will be successful and will lead to survival and well being of the mother and the child. The couples will also be able to have their sexual relation free from fear of pregnancy and of contracting sexually transmitted diseases. Within the overall umbrella of reducing infant, child and maternal mortality. The second phase of RCH program i.e. RCH – II was launched on 1st April, 2005 . The main objective of the program was to bring about a change in mainly three critical health indicators i.e. reducing total fertility rate, infant mortality rate and maternal mortality rate with a view to realizing the outcomes envisioned in the Millennium Development Goals.
RMCH+A approach has been launches in 2013 and it essentially looks to address the major causes of mortality among women and children as well as the delays in accessing and utilizing health care and services. The RMNCH+A strategic approach has been developed to provide an understanding of ‘continuum of care’ to ensure equal focus on various life stages. Priority interventions for each thematic area have been included in this to ensure that the linkages between them are contextualized to the same and consecutive life stage. It also introduces new initiatives like the use of Score Card to track the performance, National Iron + Initiative to address the issue of anaemia across all age groups and the Comprehensive Screening and Early interventions for defects at birth , diseases and deficiencies among children and adolescents. The RMNCH+A appropriately directs the States to focus their efforts on the most vulnerable population and disadvantaged groups in the country. It also emphasizes on the need to reinforce efforts in those poor performing districts that have already been identified as the high focus districts.
The 12th Five Year Plan has defined the national health outcomes and the three goals that are relevant to RMNCH+A strategic approach as follows:
Health Outcome Goals established in the 12th Fiver Year Plan
• Reduction of Infant Mortality Rate (IMR) to 25 per 1,000 live births by 2017
• Reduction in Maternal Mortality Ratio (MMR) to 100 per 100,000 live births by 2017
• Reduction in Total Fertility Rate(TFR) to 2.1 by 2017
Reference : www.unicef.org