Gurugram: Over 1,20,000 children immunised in a two-day-long pulse polio driveUpdated: Sep 21, 2020, 23:14 IST
A two-day-long intensified pulse polio immunisation (IPPI) drive was launched by the health department over the weekend. The drive, which concluded on Monday, administered polio drops to 1,28,529 children — from newborn babies to children of five years of age. The door-to-door immunisation campaign covered 2,03,164 households, as per the data shared by the district health department.
This was the second such IPPI to be conducted after a national immunisation day (NID) drive in January this year. This will be followed up with another drive in November this year. However, the subsequent two drives are known as sub-national immunisation days (SNIDS) and will be implemented only in 13 high-risk districts in Haryana.
Last year, about 0.35 million children were vaccinated against polio in Gurugram. Health department officials did not reveal the specific immunisation target (or achievement) for the ongoing year, but mentioned that it is lower than in previous years on account of Covid-19. “Still, we managed to immunise over 1,20,000 people over the past two days. We thought we would not be able to cover more than 77,000 people initially as Covid has reduced our staff strength,” said Dr Naresh Garg, deputy chief medical officer and nodal officer for polio in Gurugram.
“Every year, two IPPIs are conducted on SNIDS, and another on NID. Such IPPIs used to be more frequent, but have reduced in number over the years. The last case of polio we had in Haryana was in 2011, and in 2014 we were declared polio-free. Still, immunisation drives are needed in case of transboundary entry of the virus into the community. Other than immunisation, the health department audits all registered cases of acute flaccid paralysis (AFP) in the district to check if the virus has remerged,” Garg added.