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India to introduce rubella and rotavirus vaccines and inactivated polio vaccine

BMJ 2014; 349 doi: (Published 25 July 2014) Cite this as: BMJ 2014;349:g4844
  1. Ganapati Mudur
  1. 1New Delhi

The Indian government has accepted the recommendations of a 14 member advisory panel of scientific and medical experts to introduce vaccines against rotavirus and rubella and the injectable inactivated vaccine against polio into the universal immunisation programme.

The government announced earlier this month that the three vaccines would be brought into the universal immunisation programme, which currently provides all newborns in India with free vaccines against diphtheria, Haemophilus influenzae B, hepatitis B, measles, pertussis, polio, tetanus, and tuberculosis. Adults in selected states are also to be provided with a vaccine against Japanese encephalitis.

Health officials have said that the new vaccines are expected to reduce deaths from diarrhoea caused by rotavirus infections and illness from congenital rubella syndrome and will help India—which was certified free of polio this year—to join a globally synchronised effort to provide long lasting protection against the polio virus. But public health experts say …

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