‘Poor families have less immunisation coverage’

Namrata Devikar
Tuesday, 17 July 2018

A WHO report issued in July 2018 focuses on the 10 countries that Gavi, the Vaccine Alliance identified as the highest priority for childhood immunisation. These countries, including India, face the most severe immunisation challenges, and together account for more than 70 per cent of children who do not get a full course of basic vaccines. 

Pune: The World Health Organisation (WHO) report reveals that poor families have lesser immunisation coverage as compared to those with a better economic condition. Moreover, immunisation coverage in urban areas is again better than in rural areas.

In other countries a similar trend is seen that immunisation coverage among lower economic strata is less than those with better economic condition. According to the report, the families in India with poor economic condition provided 70.4 per cent immunisation coverage whereas families with comparatively better economic status provided immunisation coverage up to 80.9 per cent. The richest strata of the society showed that immunisation was covered up to 85.7 per cent.

However, data suggests that in Uganda, which ranks second globally among 10 low income countries, all the good economic background families have scored 78 per cent immunisation coverage and more. The national average for the country is 79.3 per cent.

The report states that in case of India, a one-year-old child in the richest quintile had a 2.3 times higher chance of being covered than a child in the poorest quintile.

Speaking about this, Dr Hari Pawar from Akola in Maharashtra who works with the State government said that  the richer the family, the more they prefer private facilities.

“People who can afford private hospitals prefer them more. However, the state apparatus for giving vaccinations is better than private facilities. Moreover, if the economic condition of the parents is better, they tend to go to different doctors. For example, sometimes children get fever after vaccinations which is normal.

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