SARGODHA - Executive District Officer (Health) Dr Iqbal said that Iodine deficiency causes mental retardation, deafness, cretinism, goiter and birth defects. He was addressing a training workshop for Lady Health Supervisors. It was jointly organised by department of health and the Micronutrient Initiative. He said that severe iodine deficiency in mothers has reduced from 37% to 4 % due to effective implementation of Universal Salt Iodisation Program. He further added that severe iodine deficiency in schoolchildren has reduced from 23% to 2 % only. Dr Iqbal Samie also emphasised the LHSs to ensure the promotion of use of iodized salt though health education sessions of households and capacity building of LHWs on Universal salt Iodization Program. Ehtshamul Haq Tariq, the field officer of the Micronutrient Initiative, briefed the participants that according to National Nutrition Survey 2011, use of iodized salt has increased to 69% as compared to 17%. He hoped that with better commitment, we will be able to curb iodine deficiency disorders. Dr Aslam Ch, DOH Sargodha, Dr Fawad Hussain, DCNP, and Hifza Malik District Focal Person, USI Program also addressed the participants.