[Health] Pulse Polio Immunization Programme

  •  Pulse Polio Immunization Programme was launched on January 17th, 2015.
  •  The National Immunization Day was celebrated on 18th January, 2015.
  •  Around 174 million children under five years across the country will be administered polio drops as part of the polio eradication campaign as a part of Immunization Day.
  •  Children of less than 5 years age will be given polio drops as part of the Government of India’s drive to sustain polio eradication from the region.

Indian Scenario:-

1. India has been implementing the Pulse Polio Programme since 1995.

2. In India, the last case of wild polio was reported on January 13, 2011.

3. The South-East Asia region of WHO has been certified on March 27, 2014 as ‘polio free’, meaning that transmission of wild poliovirus has been interrupted in this block of 11 countries including India, Bangladesh, Bhutan, Democratic People’s Republic of Korea, Indonesia, Maldives, Myanmar, Nepal, Sri Lanka, Thailand and Timor-Leste for the last three years.

4. India is mindful of the risks that persist, both on account of indigenous transmission and importation. The risk of importation of wild polio virus from these countries with persistent ongoing transmission still persists and therefore high level of immunity in the population needs to be maintained.

5. The Government of India, therefore, continues to vaccinate children with polio vaccine on the occasion of National Immunization Day (NID) and Sub-NID.

 Pulse polio programme:-

  • With the global initiative of eradication of polio in 1988 following World Health Assembly resolution in 1988, Pulse Polio Immunization programme was launched in India in 1995.
  •  Children in the age group of 0-5 years will be administered polio drops during National and Sub-national immunization rounds (in high risk areas) every year.
  •  The Pulse Polio Initiative was started with an objective of achieving hundred per cent coverage under Oral Polio Vaccine.
  •  It aimed to immunize children through improved social mobilization, plan mop-up operations in areas where poliovirus has almost disappeared and maintain high level of morale among the public.
  •  India’s battle with this crippling disease began in 1978, when Oral Polio Vaccine (OPV) was included in immunization schedule. To reach all eligible children in India, the vaccine was included in the nationwide Universal Immunization Program (UIP). By the year 1990, all districts in India were covered under UIP and that year >90% eligible children received OPV. The increased coverage led to a decline in number of polio cases.
World Health Organisation (WHO) had removed India from the list of polio-endemic countries. On 27 March 2014, World Health organization (WHO) declared India a polio free country with no case of disease being reported in last three years.

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