Rajendra Prasad Mohapatra

Denizens of Angul district, having high concentration of fluoride in the drinking water, have expressed their resentment over the closure of the national programme for prevention and control of fluorosis in the district.

Fluorosis, a public health problem is caused by excess intake of fluoride through drinking water, food products and industrial pollutants over a long period. It results in major health disorders like dental fluorosis, skeletal fluorosis and non-skeletal fluorosis.

As per reports, Angul district is drastically concerned by fluorosis. As many as seven blocks of the district are confronting fluoride threat out of which Angul block is highly endemic. The populace of these areas are experiencing dental and skeletal fluorosis. Fluoride in overabundance in a biological system has been found to have possibly unsafe consequences for the body systems. The presence of fluoride in concentration above the acceptable limits in the man and animals body creates a lot of diseases and disorders.

In a bid to prevent and control fluorosis and spread awareness in Angul, the district was included under NPPCF scheme. Grant was provided under the scheme to set up a laboratory in the District Headquarters Hospital. A fluorosis consultant medical officer, laboratory technicians and three field investigators were also appointed in the laboratory

However, after running for few years, the laboratory functioning under the scheme has been shut down. The denizens of the district have expressed their resentments over the closure of the programme. They have demanded to start the programme again to solve the major health crisis related to fluorosis in the State.

“The people of the district are facing major health issues for the high concentration of fluoride in the drinking water. Hence, prevention and control of fluorosis in the district is the most important work,” said Manas Pal a local resident.

Meanwhile, Chief Medical Officer of the district Trilochan Pradhan said that the programme for the prevention and control of fluorosis will start in the district again.

(Edited by Rashmi Ranjan Mohanty)