People in urban India have a direct access to healthcare services including hospitals and dispensaries but in contrast to that the ASHA (Accredited Social Health Activists) workers are the ones who provide the primary medical help and assistance to the residents of rural India. Millions in number, most of them are employed in rural areas while many are employed in the urban areas as well, and are mostly associated with government health organizations and projects.
Prestigious awards in six categories under the health spectrum were announced by Dr Tedros Adhanom Ghebreyesus, the Director-General of the World Health Organization. The awards were given to the deserving candidates for their contributions to advancing global health, demonstrated leadership and commitment to regional health issues.
The ceremony for the awards, which were established in 2019, was part of the live-streamed high-level opening session of the 75th World Health Assembly.
The ceremony for the awards, which were established in 2019, was part of the live-streamed high-level opening session of the 75th World Health Assembly."At a time when the world is facing an unprecedented convergence of inequity, conflict, food insecurity, climate crisis and a pandemic, this award recognizes those who have made an outstanding contribution to protecting and promoting health around the world," said Dr Tedros. "These awardees embody lifelong dedication, relentless advocacy, a commitment to equity, and selfless service of humanity."
In this prestigious event, over 1 million ASHA workers from India were honored for their crucial role in linking the community with the health system, ensuring those living in rural poverty can access primary health care services, as shown throughout the COVID-19 pandemic. The ASHAs provided door-to-door visits to check if every house is in good health.
ASHAs work to provide maternal care and immunization for children against vaccine-preventable diseases; community health care, treatment for hypertension and tuberculosis, and core areas of health promotion for nutrition, sanitation and healthy living.
The Prime Minister of India, Sri Narendra Modi took to twitter to express his delight on the recognition given to the ASHA workers by WHO. He even congratulated the ASHA workers for their contribution towards the nation.