BHOPAL: Health department preparing for Measles- Rubela (MR) vaccination campaign in the state is sceptical of cooperation from the private schools. From their past experience, the health teams preparing for the programme maintain that they would face resistance from private schools during the campaign.
In the past, the school authorities have not been forthcoming to make their students undergo additional vaccination. However, the administration is well prepared this time and might even take action against school not cooperating with the department. The health department maintains that if the schools do not cooperate, the drive, scheduled to commence in January next, will hit a roadblock in the state.
The campaign, aims to cover all children aged nine months to less than 15 years will be provided additional dose of MR Vaccine, regardless of previous vaccination status or history of measles/rubella-like illness. While the government schools have welcomed all such drives, the health workers in past have faced tough time convincing the private schools to allow their students to participate in the drive. Dr Santosh Shukla, state immunization officer, said seminars and workshops are being conducted at district and block level to pitch in teachers and others to make Measles-Rubela (MR) campaign successful.
“We have conducted seminars in Bhopal, Ujjain and in Gwalior. The immunization team faces no resistance from government schools, however, private schools give a very lukewarm response to all such drives, said Shukla. They are never forthcoming saying that the students studying with them are from well-to-do families and since they already have undergone all types of immunization they do not need additional dose, said Shulka.
However this time we are strict and will initiate action against school not cooperating, he added. He informed that recently in the meeting with private school held in Gwalior, commissioner VK Sharma instructed the school management to cooperate with the health department or else their licence would be cancelled. Speaking about the preparations for the drive, all steps are being taken to make Measles- Rubela (MR) campaign successful in the state.
Health department is committed to make state free from MR virus, he added. The immunization wing of the health department has started organizing series of meeting, seminar and workshop involving administration. It already conducted seminar at Bhopal, Ujjain and Gwalior. Health department also released audio clippings urging people to ensure proper vaccination of their children. There will be meeting with school department staff in Bhopal in the next couple of days, informed Shukla.