Ramya Kannan

CHENNAI: Districts that have been unable to achieve good coverage under the revised immunisation strategy have been asked to evolve a micro plan to rationalise the use of local infrastructure to enhance coverage. This will include sending mobile teams to inaccessible areas to vaccinate children and women.

Speaking to The Hindu, S. Elango, Director of Public Health, said one of the criticisms brought up by non-governmental organisations was that women and children were being forced to go to PHCs far away from their homes, due to jurisdictional issues.

It was to address this that the decision was taken to use health resources appropriately in order to make it most convenient for women to visit the institutions. With this move, mothers can go to the health institutions closest to their residence for vaccination. This includes taluk and, non taluk hospitals, maternity centres, government medical college hospitals, district hospitals and health outposts of Corporations and municipalities, in addition to the PHCs.

The health sub centres (HSC), closest to the people in terms of location, have not yet been included as no doctors are posted there, Dr.Elango added. But mobile teams which will be sent out to the remote and inaccessible areas of the district will visit the HSCs and anganwadis to vaccinate those who cannot make it to any other health post.

The Director added that there was a perceived shortage of vehicles for this activity, but if a micro plan was well chalked out, the resources of the entire district can be channelised to an area that is most remote or has the least resources.

The department had also requested for more mobile units, which are likely to be sanctioned. A medical officer, village health nurse and sector health nurse will accompany each mobile unit.