It is time for India to introduce the PCV vaccine now

Friday, March 31, 2017

Dr Katherine L. O’Brien, Professor of International Health, Executive Director, International Vaccines Access Centre, John Hopkins Bloomberg School of Public Health, USA said that the PCV vaccines play a major role in preventing deaths among children under the age of five years.

India has one of the largest burden of pneumonia around the world and the most common cause of bacterial pneumonia. The germ causing pneumococcal pneumonia is called Pneumococcus. A highly effective and safe vaccine against pneumococcus is available.

It has been seen in other countries who have introduced pneumococcal vaccines in their national programmes, that when a programme like this rolls out and is used among all children, a substantial reduction in the childhood mortality and morbidity.

So far, PCV vaccine has been introduced in 139 countries around the globe and hence it is one of the most extensively studied vaccines in the world. It is an incredibly safe vaccine that is highly effective against the strains of pneumococcus that is in the vaccine. The vaccine not only has health benefits but it also has economic benefits for parents and for communities.