On World Health Day, massive immunization campaign starts in India...
On World Health Day, India today began a massive immunization campaign to cover by 2020 all children who are either unvaccinated or only partially vaccinated against seven preventable diseases.
Mission ‘Indradhanush’ started with a “catch-up” campaign from April to July which will cover all children up to two years and pregnant women, Health Minister J P Nadda said, stressing that the programme will be monitored for its effective implementation.
Depicting seven colours of the rainbow, Mission Indradhanush will provide vaccination to children against diphtheria, whooping cough, tetanus, polio, tuberculosis, measles and hepatitis B.
The mission in addition will also provide vaccination against Japanese Encephalitis and Haemophilus influenza Type B in selected districts.
“Mission Indradhanush beginning April 7, catch-up campaign during April, May, June and July to cover all children upto two years and pregnant women,” Nadda said in a tweet as the exercise began.
He said the ministry had involved the Members of Parliament to publicize the mission. “I am greatly encouraged by the response from MP’s… Massive framework put in place to monitor effective implementation of Mission Indradhanush,” he said.
Focus will be on 201 high-priority districts with largest number of partially-vaccinated and unvaccinated children during the first phase, Health Ministry had earlier said. Under the second phase, 297 more districts will be covered.
Nadda had earlier said that despite the provision of free vaccination for the past more than 30 years, only 65 per cent children in India receive all vaccines during their first years of life and the coverage had increased by only four per cent in the last four years– at the rate of 1 per cent per year.
“We aim to increase the coverage to 90 per cent and sustain it by 2020,” he had said.
The focused and systematic immunization drive will be through the ‘catch-up’ campaign mode where the aim is to cover all the children who missed out.