National Immunisation Day: 16 March
Tags: Important Days
Every year on 16 March, India observes National Immunization Day to raise awareness about polio eradication worldwide.
An Overview of the News
India has set a target of vaccinating more than 324 million children through MR vaccination campaigns to eliminate measles and rubella.
Immunisation is an important aspect of public health that provides immunity to the body against pathogens that may cause diseases in the future.
Vaccines have successfully reduced the spread of many deadly diseases such as measles, chickenpox, tetanus, rubella, polio and, more recently, COVID-19.
Background of the day
National Immunization Day was first observed in 1995 when the Pulse Polio Immunization Program was launched to eradicate polio from India.
On March 16, 1995, the first dose of oral polio vaccine was administered in India as part of the Global Polio Eradication Initiative of the World Health Organization (WHO), which began in 1988.
The vaccination program was popularised through a nationwide campaign called 'Do Boond Zindagi Ki'.
Two drops of the vaccine are given orally to children aged 0-5 years in public health centres.
According to the World Health Organization (WHO), the last polio case in India was reported in 2011 in Howrah, West Bengal, and India was declared polio-free on March 27, 2014.
Every year National Immunization Day is celebrated under a specific theme and in 2022 its theme is 'Vaccines Work for Everyone'.
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