The main focus of the innovation is the knowledge and capacity building of rural women for addressing the first level of community health care needs at hamlet level itself and then to generate demand for the public health entitlements of the community.
The primary beneficiaries of this innovation are children and mothers living in all 60092 rural habitations of the tribal state of Chhattisgarh.
As the Mitanins are from the community itself, the first level of care and services are brought at the doorstep of all rural families of the state. A unique drugkit with those critical drugs needed for first level curative care is available free of cost with all these Mitanins. Despite the fact that many of them are not formally educated, these women are thoroughly trained on dispensing these drugs using innovative symbols and colour codes, identifying danger/risk signs and to promptly referring them to the health care facilities and getting them proper treatment. Through proper orientation and awareness by these women community volunteers, the community is made willing to use the available health care facilities at its best and many times, even to pressurise the public health providers to improve the quality of service delivery.
The difference lies in the fact that this innovation is a transition from the existing structure of health services to community based health services. The knowledge level as well as social confidence of Mitanins are built in such a way that they are in a position to impart knowledge to other members of the community, especially women. In other words the uniqueness of this large-scale programme that sets apart from other programmes lies in the fact that it lays stress on continuous training, support and organisation of rural, sometimes even uneducated, ordinary women to work for the healthcare needs of their remotest localities. The strategy of maintaining a huge cascade of support system is the next key difference.