Pulse polio drops were administered at a brisk pace to children up to five years across the central region on Sunday. The drive, supposed to be held on January 17, was postponed to January 31 due to the COVIC vaccine roll-out.
In Tiruchi, Tourism Minister Vellamandi N. Natarajan and Minister for Backward Classes and Minority Welfare S. Valarmathi inaugurated the immunisation drive at Periyamilaguparai Primary Healthcare Centre. A total of 1,279 centres in the rural parts of the district, 247 within city limits, 20 at Thuraiyur and 23 at Manapparai were set up with a target to cover 2.62 lakh children.
Special centres were also set up in 55 places with floating population such as Srirangam, bus stands, and Tiruchi airport. Meanwhile, 69 mobile teams were also drafted for the purpose. “Even if children have been vaccinated earlier, they must be be given the drops again. There is no side-effects. No case of polio was reported in the past 10-11 years in India and we have been declared polio-free,” Collector S. Sivarasu said.
In Pudukottai district, a total of 93% of the 1,57,382 children were covered, while in Perambalur 97%- 44,433 of a total 45,704 children were given the oral vaccination.
In Karur, 97.3% of children were given the vaccination while in Nagapattinam, 94% - 1.31 lakh children - were covered from the targeted 1.43 lakh.
Senior health officials in Pudukottai said the drive was a success. “We had instructed senior citizens not to accompany the child, and that all those visiting the immunisation centre must wear face masks. The process was more time consuming due to COVID-19 norms but precautions had to be taken,” they said.