President Ram Nath Kovind, today, launched the Pulse Polio programme for 2019 by administering polio drops to children less than five years old, at the Rahstrapati Bhawan, in the presence of J P Nadda, Union Minister of Health and Family Welfare. He administered the polio drops on the eve of the National Immunization Day, which is observed tomorrow. More than 17 crore children of less than five years across the country will be given polio drops as part of the drive of Government of India to sustain polio eradication from the country.
Speaking at the function, Nadda said that under the leadership of Prime Minister Narendra Modi, Universal Immunization Programme is focusing to protect children from more diseases than ever before and has introduced several new vaccines like Pneumococcal Conjugate Vaccine, Rotavirus vaccine, and Measles-Rubella vaccine in the recent past. “To provide additional protection to our children, Government has also introduced the injectable Inactivated Polio Vaccine into its routine immunization program,” he added.
Nadda pointed out that Government is making all efforts to protect children from more and more diseases and emphasized that all vaccines under the programme must reach every last child of the country. “Along with Universal Immunization Programme of the country, we have also launched Mission Indradhanush to accelerate our goal to achieve more than 90% full immunization coverage. More than 3.39 crore children and 87 lakh pregnant women have been vaccinated through Mission Indradhanush drives,” Nadda elaborated.
Nadda further informed that strengthening of immunization programme has contributed significantly to the decline of Infant Mortality Rate from 39 in 2014 to 32 per 1000 live births in 2017.