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Thursday, Nov 14, 2019

Health ministry’s intensified immunisation drive to reach 90% children

About 87% children are covered under the government’s universal immunisation programme (UIP), which is a significant jump from the national average of 70% in 2014.

india Updated: Oct 22, 2019 21:29 IST
Rhythma Kaul
Rhythma Kaul
Hindustan Times, New Delhi
Union health ministry will launch the second phase of nationwide immunisation drive in the second week of December.
Union health ministry will launch the second phase of nationwide immunisation drive in the second week of December.(Sanjeev Verma/HT PHOTO)
         

Union health ministry will launch the second phase of nationwide immunisation drive in the second week of December to vaccinate children in 271 districts with an immunisation coverage of less than 70%. Only 16 districts currently have routine immunisation coverage of 90% or more.

About 87% children are covered under the government’s universal immunisation programme (UIP), which is a significant jump from the national average of 70% in 2014. At least 40 million children have been immunised since 2014.

Intensified Mission Indradhanush 2.0, being launched in December, aims to achieve at least 90% pan-India immunisation coverage by 2022.

For the first time, districts were identified using a composite index of low immunisation coverage, disease outbreak data, vaccine-preventable disease data, and aspirational districts data across the country.

In 2017, the government launched Intensified Mission Indradhanush (IMI) to reach out to children who were not immunised at all or may had received partial immunisation. In one year, around 5 million children were immunised against 12 vaccine preventable diseases.

The ministry will continue the intensified immunisation drive as latest government data shows that only 16 districts in the country have achieved 90% coverage so far.

“The districts chosen for the current drive have immunisation coverage of 70% or below, which is less than the national average. In Uttar Pradesh and Bihar, the drive will be conducted at the block-level, for which 652 blocks have been identified in 109 districts,” said Vandana Gurnani, additional secretary, ministry of health and family welfare.

The drive will take place for a week for four consecutive months beginning December.

“We will not stop until every single child is immunized in the country. I am not satisfied with the 90% target, I am aiming for 100% coverage,” said health minister Harsh Vardhan.

India this year is commemorating 25 years of its successful Pulse Polio Programme.