The health ministry is planning to revamp its flagship immunisation programme ‘Mission Indradhanush‘ to include four new vaccines.
- The mission, currently providing coverage against seven life-threatening diseases, will soon also include vaccines for rotavirus, measles rubella, inactivated polio vaccine bivalent and Japanese Encephalitis for adults.
Mission Indradhanush was launched by the Health & Family Welfare Ministry. The Mission was launched on Good Governance Day to mark the birth anniversary of Bharat Ratna Madan Mohan Malaviya and birthday of Bharat Ratna Atal Bihari Vajpayee.
The Mission Indradhanush, depicting seven colours of the rainbow, aims to cover all those children by 2020 who are either unvaccinated, or are partially vaccinated against seven vaccine preventable diseases which include diphtheria, whooping cough, tetanus, polio, tuberculosis, measles and hepatitis B.
- The Mission is being implemented in 201 high focus districts in the country in the first phase which have nearly 50% of all unvaccinated or partially vaccinated children (Of the 201 districts, 82 districts are in just four states of UP, Bihar, Madhya Pradesh and Rajasthan and nearly 25% of the unvaccinated or partially vaccinated children of India are in these 82 districts of 4 states).
- These districts will be targeted by intensive efforts to improve the routine immunization coverage.
- The campaign is part of the Universal Immunisation Programme by 2020 and is being implemented under the National Health Mission across the country.
- Between 2009-2013 immunization coverage has increased from 61% to 65%, indicating only 1% increase in coverage every year. To accelerate the process of immunization by covering 5% and more children every year, the Mission Mode has been adopted to achieve target of full coverage by 2020.
- The focused and systematic immunization drive will be through a “catch-up” campaign mode where the aim is to cover all the children who have been left out or missed out for immunization.
- The learnings from the successful implementation of the polio programme will be applied in planning and implementation of the mission.
- The Ministry will be technically supported by WHO, UNICEF, Rotary International and other donor partners. Mass media, interpersonal communication, and sturdy mechanisms of monitoring and evaluating the scheme are crucial components of Mission Indradhanush.
The World Health Organization (WHO) pegs India’s vaccine coverage at less than 80%. The government is targeting to immunise 90% of infants by 2020 under its ambitious nationwide immunisation drive.