Anti-measles drive: Only 5% of kids covered in Mumbra schools

THANE/MUMBAI: The vaccination drive is seeing mixed results. While the state met its daily target of vaccinating 10 lakh children on the first day, Muslim-dominated pockets in Thane recorded just 5% vaccination. In Mumbai, the vaccination drive achieved nearly 70% coverage in the first two days.
Thane health officials said that the Muslim-dominated pockets were opposed to administering the MR with just about 5% of children vaccinated in Mumbra, Kausa and Rabodi in the last two days. In Thane city , health officials have achieved 80% target.

The common myth prevailing in these areas is that vaccines led to impotency and infertility and should not be administered to children. “We are focusing on counselling these areas,” said a senior health official. Elected representatives said they will have a discussion with the community elders to clear their doubts and resolve their queries. “During our Friday prayers, we will be clearing people‘s misconceptions and urge them to vaccinate their children. We hope to get a positive response next week,” said Najib Mulla, NCP corporator from Rabodi.

On the second day of the drive, almost 65,000 students in 195 schools across Mumbai received the vaccine. BMC health officials were a bit worried that only 72% of the intended number of students were administered the shot. “The 195 schools have 89,091 children who are eligible for the vaccine, but almost a third were not available for the vaccination,” said an official.

Meanwhile, the state government is happy with overall response. On day one, 10.8 lakh children were given the measles-rubella shot. “Our target was to cover 10 lakh children every day and we are on schedule,” said a state health department official.

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