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Call for equal access to life saving vaccines

By Staff Reporter

GUWAHATI, Nov 24 - In view of vaccine preventable diseases still being one of the major factors for death of young children, experts have not only emphasised the need for additional resources and innovations to prevent and treat such common illnesses, but also called for equal access for all to life saving vaccines.

Although pneumonia and diarrhoea are vaccine preventable, these diseases continue to kill hundreds of thousands of young children in many countries including India.

In Assam, approximately 8,000 children lose their lives annually due to pneumonia and more than 7,360 die due to diarrhoea.

Global Health Strategies, which is an international organisation that raises awareness and provides support for public health challenges, has pointed out that pneumonia and diarrhoea-related deaths in the State can be prevented with a strong immunisation system.

�Delivering vaccines to children safely and effectively requires a strong immunisation system. Given that pneumonia and diarrhoea are the leading causes of death of children under five, it is important that the authorities concerned ensure equitable access to life saving vaccines,� said Priyadarshini Das of Global Health Strategies, adding that vaccines are one of the most cost-effective solutions in the history of health and development.

It needs to be mentioned that despite reduction in the burden of vaccine preventable diseases and achievement in overall reductions in child mortality, serious challenges remain for the country. An estimated 1.3 million children under the age of five continue to die each year in the country accounting for roughly one fifth of the world�s total under five deaths. �Pneumonia and diarrhoea together account for the largest share (23 per cent) of total under five deaths in India. Even in cases of survival, the severe burden of illness that pneumonia and diarrhoea cause, could adversely impact child growth and development. These diseases also place a significant economic burden on families, communities and the healthcare system,� said Das, adding that vaccines are a necessary part of an integrated strategy to address these common diseases.

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Call for equal access to life saving vaccines

GUWAHATI, Nov 24 - In view of vaccine preventable diseases still being one of the major factors for death of young children, experts have not only emphasised the need for additional resources and innovations to prevent and treat such common illnesses, but also called for equal access for all to life saving vaccines.

Although pneumonia and diarrhoea are vaccine preventable, these diseases continue to kill hundreds of thousands of young children in many countries including India.

In Assam, approximately 8,000 children lose their lives annually due to pneumonia and more than 7,360 die due to diarrhoea.

Global Health Strategies, which is an international organisation that raises awareness and provides support for public health challenges, has pointed out that pneumonia and diarrhoea-related deaths in the State can be prevented with a strong immunisation system.

�Delivering vaccines to children safely and effectively requires a strong immunisation system. Given that pneumonia and diarrhoea are the leading causes of death of children under five, it is important that the authorities concerned ensure equitable access to life saving vaccines,� said Priyadarshini Das of Global Health Strategies, adding that vaccines are one of the most cost-effective solutions in the history of health and development.

It needs to be mentioned that despite reduction in the burden of vaccine preventable diseases and achievement in overall reductions in child mortality, serious challenges remain for the country. An estimated 1.3 million children under the age of five continue to die each year in the country accounting for roughly one fifth of the world�s total under five deaths. �Pneumonia and diarrhoea together account for the largest share (23 per cent) of total under five deaths in India. Even in cases of survival, the severe burden of illness that pneumonia and diarrhoea cause, could adversely impact child growth and development. These diseases also place a significant economic burden on families, communities and the healthcare system,� said Das, adding that vaccines are a necessary part of an integrated strategy to address these common diseases.