An official said that the West Bengal health department is set to start thalassemia awareness camps across the state to encourage students in state-run educational institutions to opt for testing and screening procedures.
The heath service department will be flagging off thalassemia awareness camps by the end of this month in government colleges across the state to increase awareness about the blood disorder, an inherited condition.
"We will start campaigns by the end of this month in the government colleges. The camps will educate people about its causes, effects and the importance of pre-marital screening etc.," B.R. Satpathi, state Director of Health Services, told IANS.
Although thalassemia testing is not mandatory in colleges, Satpathi said such camps will boost confidence in heads of colleges to take up screening on a routine basis.
Thalassemia is a condition characterised by the weakening and destruction of blood cells. Patients who suffer the condition have missing or variant genes that affect how the body makes haemoglobin, the protein in red blood cells that carries oxygen.