The Nurse Asked Me for 500 Rupees to Cut My Umbilical Cord

A pregnant woman in Bihar was charged Rs 500 for cutting of the umbilical cord and also had to pay for painkillers she needed before her delivery. Women in the village report that on refusing to pay, the Auxiliary-Nurse Midwife refuses to service them point blank. This is despite a government scheme – the Janani  Suraksha Yojana – that makes provisions to reduce out-of-pocket expenditure for women below poverty line —providing free antenatal check ups, IFA tablets, medicines, nutrition in health institutions, provision for blood transfusion, and transport from health centres and back.

Gyanti Kumari reports from Siwan, Bihar

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