National Deworming Day 2024 (10th February), Theme & History

National Deworming Day 2024

National Deworming Day (NDD) is an annual initiative in India launched by the Ministry of Health and Family Welfare (MoHFW) to address the issue of soil-transmitted helminthiasis (STH) among children. The next National Deworming Day will be celebrated on February 10th, 2024.

STHs, commonly known as intestinal worms, are parasitic worms transmitted through contaminated soil and can cause significant health problems, including malnutrition, anemia, and impaired cognitive development.

National Deworming Day Theme 2024

The official theme for National Deworming Day 2024 in India has not yet been announced. The theme is usually declared several months before the actual day, which is February 10th, 2024.

However, based on previous themes and the ongoing focus of the program, some potential themes for NDD 2024 could be:

  • “Eliminate STH: Invest in a healthier future for children.”
  • “Together, we can deworm our future.”
  • “STH-free children: A healthy and productive workforce for India.”
  • “Education starts with good health: Deworming for a brighter future.”
  • “Empowering communities to break the cycle of STH infections.”

What is Soil-Transmitted Helminthiasis (STH)

Soil-Transmitted Helminthiasis (STH), also known as intestinal worms, is a group of parasitic infections caused by several types of helminth worms that live in the human intestines. These worms are transmitted through contact with contaminated soil and can cause various health problems, particularly in children.

Common types of STH

  • Ascaris lumbricoides (roundworm): This is the largest intestinal worm and can grow up to 35 cm in length.
  • Trichuris trichiura (whipworm): This worm has a whip-like shape and is about 3-5 cm long.
  • Ancylostoma duodenale and Necator americanus (hookworm): These worms are small, about 1 cm in length, and have hook-like mouthparts that they use to attach to the intestinal wall.


  • STH eggs are passed in the feces of infected persons and can survive in the soil for months or even years.
  • People become infected when they ingest these eggs, which can happen in several ways:
    • Walking barefoot on contaminated soil
    • Eating contaminated food or water
    • Playing in contaminated soil


  • Many people with STH infections have no symptoms. However, some people may experience:
    • Abdominal pain
    • Diarrhea
    • Nausea and vomiting
    • Weight loss
    • Anemia
    • Stunting (impaired growth)
    • Cognitive impairment


  • STH infections are a major public health problem, affecting millions of people worldwide, particularly in developing countries.
  • These infections can have a significant impact on children’s health and development, leading to impaired cognitive function, reduced school attendance, and decreased productivity.


  • Several measures can help prevent STH infections:
    • Wearing shoes: Wearing shoes, especially when outdoors, helps prevent contact with contaminated soil.
    • Improving sanitation: Improving sanitation facilities and hygiene practices, such as handwashing with soap and water, can help reduce the spread of STH eggs.
    • Deworming: Regular deworming with medication, such as Albendazole, can effectively eliminate STH infections.
    • Public awareness: Raising awareness about STH infections and promoting preventive measures can empower communities to protect themselves from these parasites.


  • STH infections are usually treated with a single dose of medication, such as Albendazole or Mebendazole.
  • It is important to follow proper hygiene practices and deworming regimens to prevent reinfection.

History of National Deworming Day in India

Early Initiatives

  • Recognizing the prevalence of soil-transmitted helminth (STH) infections and their detrimental impact on children’s health, India initiated deworming programs in several states as early as the 1980s.
  • These early programs were implemented on a smaller scale and often focused on specific geographical regions or target groups.

National Deworming Day Launch

  • In 2015, recognizing the need for a more comprehensive and coordinated approach, the Ministry of Health and Family Welfare launched the National Deworming Day (NDD) as part of the National Health Mission (NHM).
  • The program aimed to deworm all children and adolescents between the ages of 1 and 19 years, enrolled or unenrolled in school, through a single dose of Albendazole tablets.
  • This marked a significant step towards eliminating STH infections and improving child health on a national scale.

Growth and Expansion

  • NDD has been implemented annually since its launch, reaching millions of children across India.
  • The program has successfully expanded its coverage over the years, with increasing participation from states and communities.
  • Alongside the deworming campaigns, efforts have been made to improve sanitation facilities, promote hygiene practices, and raise awareness about STH infections and their prevention.

Achievements and Impact

  • NDD has been credited with significantly reducing the prevalence of STH infections in India.
  • Studies show a decrease in anemia, improved nutritional status, and enhanced cognitive development among children who have been dewormed regularly.
  • The program has also contributed to improving school attendance and overall educational outcomes.

Challenges and Future Directions

  • Despite the remarkable progress, challenges remain in reaching all eligible children and ensuring sustained impact.
  • Addressing issues of access, equity, and adherence to deworming medication remains crucial for achieving complete elimination of STH infections.
  • The long-term sustainability of the program requires continued funding, political commitment, and community engagement.

National Deworming Day has become a pivotal initiative in India’s fight against STH infections and continues to play a vital role in ensuring the health and well-being of children and adolescents.

Significance of National Deworming Day

National Deworming Day (NDD) is a crucial initiative with several significant implications for India’s children and public health:

  • STH infections are highly prevalent in India, affecting millions of children. These infections can lead to various health problems, including anemia, malnutrition, impaired cognitive development, and stunted growth.
  • NDD plays a critical role in reducing the prevalence of STH infections by administering deworming medication to a large number of children.
  • This significantly improves children’s health and well-being, enabling them to reach their full potential.
  • Deworming children helps address health issues caused by STH infections, such as anemia and malnutrition.
  • This results in improved physical and cognitive development, leading to better learning outcomes and school attendance.
  • NDD contributes to a healthier and more educated future generation, which is vital for India’s social and economic development.
  • STH infections can negatively impact individuals’ productivity and earning potential in the future.
  • By reducing STH infections, NDD contributes to a healthier and more productive workforce, boosting India’s economic growth and prosperity.
  • The program’s large-scale implementation ensures maximum impact and efficient use of resources.
  • NDD involves the active participation of various stakeholders, including teachers, Anganwadi workers, community leaders, and volunteers.
  • This fosters a sense of ownership and responsibility within communities, promoting sustainable health practices and improving overall well-being.
  • By investing in NDD and the health of its children, India invests in a brighter future.
  • A healthy and educated population contributes to a stronger and more prosperous nation.

Overall, National Deworming Day serves as a powerful tool for improving child health, promoting education, and building a healthier and more productive future for India.

10th February 2024 Special Day

On the 10th of February 2024, India observes National Deworming Day (NDD), an annual initiative spearheaded by the Ministry of Health and Family Welfare (MoHFW) to combat soil-transmitted helminthiasis (STH) among children. This crucial day emphasizes the importance of deworming programs in safeguarding the health and well-being of the younger generation, fostering a proactive approach to address and prevent parasitic infections, and ensuring a brighter and healthier future for India’s children.


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