Guj. Govt. Awards Dr. Yazdi Italia For Contributions In Sickle Cell Anemia

Dr. Yazdi Italia was recently honoured by the Government of Gujarat for his significant contributions in Health Services for the Prevention and Control of Sickle Cell Anemia and Thalassemia. The award was presented to him by Gujarat Chief Minister, Bhupendrabhai Patel.

Dr. Italia, Ph.D, is a Translation Scientist. Since 1978, he is reckoned as one of the pioneers and Ex. Hon. Director (2006 – 2012) of India’s first Sickle Cell Anemia Control Program by the Gujarat Government. This program was also awarded the Prime Minister’s Award as a model project at a national level. He is co-investigator for many ICMR research projects including Indo-US NBS project.

Sickle cell anemia is a genetic disease found in tribals, caused due to deficiency of colour formula, resulting in severe physical and mental suffering. For years, Dr Yazdi Italia has been working towards relieving the tribals from the pain of this hereditary disease in the Duganral and Atanrial areas. His efforts have saved many lives and relieved the misery of innumerable tribals.

Dr. Yazdi Italia also launched the first Sickle Cell Project of Gujarat. In 2006, the then CM of Gujarat, Narendra Modi, assigned the responsibility of the sickle cell anemia control program to the Valsad Blood Donation Center, which was entrusted the responsibility of providing health services to the state of Gujarat. In 2011, this program was awarded the prestigious Prime Minister’s Award by then PM Manmohan Singh for having an innovative approach that could improve the health of India’s numerous tribal communities. This was replicated by other Indian states. Thanks to Dr. Italia’s consistent efforts, the Sickle Cell Project is now included as a project of the Health Department of the Central Government and those suffering from this disease are being given free treatment and medicine. (As per statistics, there are a total of 29,600 Sickle Cell Anemia patients in Gujarat.)

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