Intensified Mission Indradhanush (IMI), a campaign mode vaccination programme launched by Prime Minister Narendra Modi in 2017, is one of 12 best practices from around the world to be featured in a special issue of the BMJ (British Medical Journal) next month.
The special issue is being brought out on the occasion of the fourth Partners Forum conference organised by the Government of India that will be held in New Delhi on December 12-13. Modi will deliver the keynote address at the conference.
Partners’ Forum is short for the meeting every four years of The Partnership for Maternal, Newborn & Child Health (The Partnership, PMNCH) that is an alliance of more than 1,000 organisations in 192 countries. The organisations work in the sexual, reproductive, maternal, newborn, child and adolescent health communities, as well as health influencing sectors.
Lagging in vaccinations? Final report awaited
Intensified Mission Indradhanush covers 173 districts and 17 cities. Despite the positive international reviews of Mission Indradhanush, this year’s edition of the Johns Hopkins report card pointed out that in India, baby girls miss out on vaccination. Health secretary Preeti Sudan cites National Family Health Survey 4 data to say that vaccinations among both boys and girls is in the 62% range — this is data before Mission Indradhanush though. Final data post Mission Indradhanush for the entire country is still awaited. India's current infant mortality rate (2016) is 34 deaths per 1,000 live births and the maternal mortality rate is 130 per 100,000 live births.
“The focus of this conference is on cross-sectoral partnerships towards maternal and child health. IMI is a perfect example of that — this time we have written to 11 ministries to ensure no child is left out. We will showcase IMI during the conference but there is also the marketplace that we are setting up in the Vigyan Bhawan lawns where states will showcase their best practices. We are also organising an India Day. IMI will also be featured in the special Partners’ Forum special issue of BMJ,” health secretary Preeti Sudan told The Indian Express. She is also currently the global chair of the Forum.
Knowledge exchange is one of the key goals of Partners’ Forum. IMI has already garnered global applause including in last year’s annual Pneumonia Diarrhoea report card of Johns Hopkins Bloomberg School of Public Health for dramatically increasing vaccination coverage from the earlier 1 per cent per year to a 6.7 percent annual increase.
Launched by PM Modi in October 2017, IMI aims to reach each and every child under two years of age and all pregnant women who have been left uncovered under the routine immunisation programme. The special drive focuses on improving immunisation coverage in select districts and cities with particularly low immunisation rates to ensure full immunisation to more than 90 per cent by December 2018.
The achievement of full immunisation under Mission Indradhanush to at least 90 per cent coverage was to be achieved by 2020 earlier. With the launch of IMI, achievement of the target has now been advanced. In all, IMI covers 173 districts and 17 cities. Despite the positive international reviews of Mission Indradhanush, this year’s edition of the Johns Hopkins report card pointed out that in India baby girls miss out on vaccinations.