Children to get new vaccine for pneumonia
Thiruvananthapuram: One more vaccine will be administered for children less than two years of age. Kerala and other states will inoculate children with the new vaccine Pneumococcal Conjugate Vaccine against pneumonia (Pneumococcal Pneumonia).
Mostly, the infection of pneumococcal bacteria will lead to severe cases of pneumonia. The bacteria will infect the blood, ear and sinus and also causes meningitis.
The Hib vaccine that prevents Haemophilus influenzae type b and pneumonia caused by bacteria has already been included in the Pentavalent shots vaccinating children currently.
The PCV is administered to children at one and a half month and then at three and a half month. Also, a booster dose will be given after one year. However, the guidelines of vaccination in the state are yet to be formulated.
Yearly almost 10 lakhs of children are dying due of pneumonia worldwide. The mortality rate of diarrhoea, meningitis, HIV are below this. Out of 1000 kids, 7 die due to pneumonia in India. Among them, 30 percent were affected by pneumococcal pneumonia.
Pneumonia among children declines
Through the Hib vaccine, children affected by pneumonia was brought down by 25 percent. By the introduction of the pneumococcal conjugate vaccine, the disease can be prevented completely, says Dr Johny Sebastain, Secretary of Indian Academy of Paediatric Kerala.
Dr VR Raju, Director of Health Department, said that the health workers will get training to administer the newly introduced vaccine. It will be distributed free through government healthcare institutions.