MR vaccination campaign from February 7 to March 1

 The authorities in Dakshina Kannada district are looking at administering the measles-rubella (MR) vaccine to 4,72,589 children aged between nine months and 15 years from February 7 to March 1.

District Health Officer Dr Ramakrishna Rao said on Saturday the programme, being implemented upon the National Technical Advisory Group on Immunisation’s recommendation, is seeking to eliminate both the viruses by 2020.

Rubella, which is caused by an infection of the virus, can cause abortion, stillbirths or congenital anomalies, if contracted during early pregnancy. As the virus is known to circulate in the system of children , vaccinating boys and girls simultaneously will help ensure the virus eventually disappears in the community, he added.

Dr Ramakrishna said the programme will be implemented through schools and anganwadis as well as in outreach sites and all children in the target age group will be vaccinated irrespective of previous immunisation status.

In Dakshina Kannada, children studying in 2,551 schools and 2,104 anganwadi centres will be covered for one week. During the second and third weeks, the outreach activities will be taken up to ensure that all the leftout children are vaccinated. The vaccine will not be administered on February 10, on account of National Deworming Day. It will not be administered on four Thursdays on accounation immunisation programme in all the PHCs, CHCs and hospitals. The Indian Association of Paediatricians and the Indian Medical Association will also be associated with the campaign.

RCHO Dr Ashok said that if a child infected with rubella comes in contact with a pregnant women, then the child in the womb will also be affected. Malnourished children will be vaccinated on a priority basis, as they are more likely to have complications like diarrea and pneumonia. The awareness on MR vaccination is being created with the help of anganwadi teachers, Asha workers and doctors. Awareness will be created among children and parents about the necessity of the vaccination. A large number of health workers, including medical officers, village health nurses, auxiliary nurse midwives, nurses and community health nurses have been roped in for successful implementation of the drive.

He called upon the public not to heed to any rumours on the vaccine.
Zilla Panchayat Standing Committee on Health and Education President Shahul Hameed said rumours is being spread through social media on   MR vaccination. The rumours are nothing, but a conspiracy of private companies. The vaccination costs Rs 3,000 in private hospitals, he added.

Suspected cases in Dakshina Kannada

RCHO Dr Ashok said that seven Rubella cases have been reported in Dakshina Kannada district in the last four months while 15 measles cases have been reported in the district in the last four months.

“The samples of suspected cases have been collected and sent for testing. The parents should cooperate with the Department of Health and Family Welfare for the success of the vaccination programme,” he said.

 

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