Chinese vaccine to fight Japanese Encephalitis | india | Hindustan Times
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Chinese vaccine to fight Japanese Encephalitis

THE CENTRAL Government has decided to counter Japanese Encephalitis with Chinese vaccine. The Ministry of Health and Family Welfare has decided to import a single dose tissue culture Chinese vaccine called ?SA14-14-2? for a vaccination programme in the districts of east UP.

india Updated: Feb 03, 2006 01:05 IST

THE CENTRAL Government has decided to counter Japanese Encephalitis with Chinese vaccine. The Ministry of Health and Family Welfare has decided to import a single dose tissue culture Chinese vaccine called ‘SA14-14-2’ for a vaccination programme in the districts of east UP.

According to the agreement reached between the Chinese and the Indian Governments, the consignments of Chinese vaccine will land in Uttar Pradesh in mid-April.

The State Medical Health Department plans to launch the immunisation drive in the first week of May.

In the first phase, 60 lakh children residing in five districts of east UP, including Gorakhpur, Kushinagar, Deoria, Maharajganj and Lakhmipur Kheri, will be immunised. The Central Government has assured the State Government that 66 lakh doses of ‘SA14-14-2’ vaccine will be supplied for the immunisation drive.

Last year, Japanese Encephalitis infected over 5,000 children and 1,500 died.

Those children who survived, suffered various types of physical disabilities. The State Government urged the Central Government to supply the vaccine to save the lives of children. Only 4 lakh traditional vaccine derived from mouse brain was available with Central Research Institute (CRI), Kasauli located in Himachal Pradesh.

But the vaccine was insufficient, as JE had spread its tentacles in 34 districts.
Union Health and Family Welfare Minister Anbumani Ramadoss informed the State Government that it had launched a global search for JE vaccine.

Indian Embassies at Japan, Korea, Vietnam, Thailand, China and Taiwan were alerted and directed to assess the availability of the JE vaccine in their respective countries. Finally, the Central Government zeroed in on Chinese vaccines.

Principal secretary, Medical Health, Neeta Choudhary said the Chinese vaccine had been tried in Nepal in 1999 with 90 per cent success rate. This vaccine is not only effective, before the outbreak of the JE, but also during the period of its onset.

Even in China, stocks of the vaccine are limited.

“In the first phase, we have planned to vaccinate only vulnerable children in the age group of one to fifteen years residing in traditional endemic areas. Within five years children in all the 34 districts where the outbreak of JE was reported will be immunised,” Chaudhary said.The immunisation drive will be organised on the pattern of the polio immunisation programme.

The Health Department has planned a meeting of Health officials at Gorakhpur on Saturday. Health officials of Gorakhpur, Kushinagar, Deoria and Maharajganj will be present at the meeting.