Polio fight gets shot in the arm

Thursday, May 12, 2016

In order to provide children with additional protection against polio virus, the State Government on Wednesday introduced Inactivated Poliovirus Vaccine (IPV), India’s first injectable vaccine. As part of a series of new initiatives to improve child mortality. The vaccine launched here by Health Minister Atanu Sabyasachi Nayak would protect children against all three forms of poliovirus. When used in combination with Oral Polio Vaccine (OPV), it serves the dual purpose of quickly boosting the child’s immunity to polio. It helps in preventing any possible polio outbreak. Nayak said in line with commitment to the Polio Endgame Strategic Plan (2013-18), two fractional doses of IPV are being introduced into the routine immunization programme in at least eight States - Odisha, Andhra Pradesh, Tamil Nadu, Karnataka, Kerala, Telangana, Maharashtra and Puducherry. The dose will be administered to children between 6 and 14 weeks along with the first and third dose of OPV and Pentavalent vaccine. If the immunization is delayed, the child can be given IPV up to one year of age. In Odisha, around 8,53,000 children below one year of age will be targeted annually through immunization sessions held in all health facilities and Government hospitals every month across the State. “The vaccine is being introduced in the State. New effective vaccines have already been introduced in phased manner in the universal routine immunization programme State-wide,” the Minister said. The vaccines which are already in use include Pentavalent Vaccine, launched in October, 2015 followed by Rotavirus Vaccine, introduced in March, 2016 and Bivalent Oral Polio vaccine on April 25, 2016. The incidence of polio has been reduced by more than 99 per cent worldwide after the Global Polio Eradication Initiative (GPEI) was launched in 1988, the Minister said and added that Odisha has been polio-free since 2009. Preventing polio using vaccination is the only way to defeat the disease. There is no cure and no other effective way besides vaccination to prevent the disease from spreading, Nayak added.

Shield for State

  • In Odisha, 8,53,000 children will be vaccinated
  • The vaccine would protect children against all three forms of poliovirus
  • Dose to be administered to children at 6-14 weeks with first and third dose of OPV