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Rajasthan Launches Programs to Overcome Misconceptions About Childbirth

Jaipur: With a view to combating the high maternal mortality rate and empowering the women, the Rajasthan government Friday launched a program// that is expected to tackle some common misconceptions and taboos related to childbirth.

Along with state's Health Minister Digamber Singh, the emergency contraception program was jointly launched by board members of Population Services International, (PSI), a non-governmental organization, Hollywood actor Ashley Judd and Bollywood actor Akshay Kumar.

PSl has piloted this social marketing initiative to encourage and promote the concept of emergency contraception amongst local people.

Emergency contraception is a concentrated dose of the hormone found in many birth control pills and can prevent pregnancy when taken shortly after intercourse. It is supposed to be most effective if consumed within the first 72 hours.

The benefits also include the means to avoid unwanted pregnancy and abortion, which is one of the primary causes of death among women. PSI is now focusing its efforts on towns with more than 60 percent of the urban slum population in the state.

Judd, who is also a member of the PSI board, said: "Woman is the nucleus of the family and we need to preserve good healthy conditions for the fairer sex to promote her family. We also intend to address the misconception that a single act of intercourse may not lead to unwanted pregnancy. The project primarily aims at encouraging the use of the contraception, by providing easy access to such products and services."

Akshay, who was enthusiastic to attend the occasion, said: "I am here not to promote myself or just to be here with an illustrious group of people. We like to believe that childbirth is an act of God but we all know it is our own negligence"

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