7th Feb 2018 09:02:PM Editorials
Eastern Sentinel Arunachal News

           According to the recently published National Family Health Survey (NFHS) IV, 90 percent of children in Arunachal are not getting immunized on time. The age group of 12 to 23 months is considered a crucial period in a child’s development and immunity-building and this is a huge concern as thousands of young lives are at risk.

As per current medical protocol, vaccination against tuberculosis has to be given to a child within one month of birth. A Hepatitis B shot should be given within 24 hours of birth, while vaccines protecting against diphtheria, pertussis and tetanus need to be given in the 6th, 10th and 14th weeks respectively. Polio drops have to be administered upto five years while measles vaccination is between nine and 12 months.

The timing of the vaccination, say health experts, is crucial in order to ensure that the child develops immunity for a given disease at the correct age.

Non-adherence to vaccination schedule is one of the reasons for high infant mortality rate in our country. In fact, the recent NFHS data also shows that the infant mortality rate in India is currently at a high 41 deaths per 1000 live births.

Despite the life-saving nature of vaccination, making people especially parents open to the idea has been a huge challenge. In remote pockets of Arunachal, healthcare personnel are often threatened of dire consequences by parents and wards during routine immunization process. There is an innate fear among rural, uneducated folks regarding the side effects of immunization which is generally mild fever which is absolutely normal. It is no wonder that the National Family Health Survey (NFHS) IV puts Arunachal as the second worst performer after another Northeastern state Manipur.

The NFHS report is a definite blow to the state health department but this information must be utilised to get to the crux of the issue. The Measles Rubella vaccination campaign was launched on February 1 and the timing of the report can be used as a pointer  to address issues which are most crucial for success of the immunization process i.e, address people’s fears and wider reach of health personnel.


Kenter Joya Riba

(Managing Editor)
      She is a graduate in Science with post graduation in Sociology from University of Pune. She has been in the media industry for nearly a decade. Before turning to print business, she has been associated with radio and television.
Email: kenterjoyaz@easternsentinel.in / editoreasternsentinel@gmail.com
Phone: 0360-2212313

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