The state health department will initiate a Measles Rubella Vaccination (MRV) from the third week of November with an aim to vaccinate 2.5 crore children in two months. The vaccine will be administered free of cost to all children aged between 9 months and 15 years across the state.
While the first phase of the programme will target government schools, according to a recent notification of the health department, the drive will cover all private schools affiliated to various central boards in January, besides state government-aided educational institutions in subsequent phases.
As per the guidelines issued by the state government to the district administration, awareness campaigns will also be carried out in all upper primary schools, secondary schools and Madarsas, apart from the private schools affiliated to various central boards.
The vaccination will be conducted at all the primary health centres, block primary health centres, rural health centres, state general hospitals, sub-divisional hospitals, districts hospitals and also at various medical colleges and hospitals from November 29 to January 14.
Apart from school children, others from anganwadi centres and those under Village Health Nutrition Day campaign would be administered the vaccine from November 29 to December 22.
The MR Vaccine has been used in the private sector so far but has now been incorporated in the state government’s universal immunisation programme, replacing old measles vaccine, said officials. The campaign has been launched with the aim of eliminating measles and controlling Rubella, the cause of serious neurological and cardiological defects among newborns if infection occurs during pregnancy.