Union Government launches IPV injection as part of global polio endgame strategy
The Union Government has launched inactivated polio vaccine (IPV) injection as part of the global polio endgame strategy in New Delhi.
The vaccine was launched by the Union Minister of Health and Family Welfare J P Nadda in New Delhi.
It was launched as part of India’s next step in Universal Immunization Programme (UIP) to fight against polio virus in the country.
IPV injections do not contain an attenuated vaccine virus which is used in oral polio vaccine (OPV). Thus it reduces the chances of Vaccine Derived Polio Virus (VDPV).
- The launching of IPV would enable children to get double protection from polio i.e. orally and in the form of injection.
- UIP initially will cover six states including Uttar Pardesh , Madhya Pardesh , Bihar, Assam, Punjab and Gujarat in the first phase.
- By April 2016, Union Government would switch to IPV alongside the oral polio vaccine (OPV) to eradicate polio virus in the country.
- Henceforth, as part of India’s efforts to boost its polio immunization programme babies getting their third dose of OPV now would be administered an injection with IPV.
It should be noted that India was certified polio-free country on 27 March 2014, but the immunization programme continues since two of its neighbours Afghanistan and Pakistan still remain polio-endemic countries.
About Polio virus
- Poliomyelitis (polio) is a highly infectious viral disease, which mainly affects young children below age of 5.
- Transmission: The virus is transmitted from person-to-person. It mainly spreads through the faecal-oral route (e.g. contaminated water or food). After entering body, it multiplies in the intestine, from where it can invade the nervous system and can cause paralysis.
- Symptoms: Initial symptoms include fever, fatigue, headache, vomiting, stiffness in the neck, and pain in the limbs. In some cases, it causes permanent paralysis. There is no cure for polio virus, it can only be prevented by immunization.