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Group Discussion

Why do we need public awarenss of vaccination

Measles is an acute illness caused by the virus of the paramyxo virus family. Access to report of WHO and Centre for decease control and prevention 2.3 million young ones from India are not vaccinated against it and India has 4th highest number of measles cases in the world.

According to a WHO study, vaccine hesitancy is one of the major reason for the spread of various diseases.

  1. Vaccine Hesitancy 
  2. Delay in acceptance or refusal of vaccine despite the availability of vaccine services (WHO),
  3. It is reported in 90% of countries,
  4. Reason for vaccine hesitancy –
  • Misinformation,
  • Fear of side effect,
  • Anti-vaccine campaigning,
  • Fake news of vaccine safety,
  • Hesitancy on religious ground
  • March 2019, report of WHO

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  • 52% of 28 EU members – agree vaccine effective,
  • 48% – believed vaccine causes side effects
  1. The spread of measles is largely attributed to vaccine hesitancy in record times.
  2. Measles – globally down by 59% between 2000 – 2018, but it saw spike since 2016,

vii. There was a 30% increase worldwide in 2018 according to the WHO report.

viii. With hesitancy increasing in India, there is a need to address the VH problem.

  1. Solution for VH 
  2. Need for public awareness 
  • 48% of EU people believe vaccine causes side effects.
  • In the Philippines, public trust in vaccine broke when manufacturer reported risks after mass vaccination.
  1. Misinformation needs t to be addressed
  • Due to low awareness and misinformation, 45% of children missed vaccination in India (2018 study)
  • Out of which 24% hesitated due to apprehension to adverse effect and 11% hesitated due to fear.`
  1. Promote vaccination and mate policies

That reduces the public health risk associated with hesitancy.

  1. Improve uptake, monitoring and evaluation of vaccines,
  2. Makes laws – make laws and legislation to make vaccine mandatory [ EU – some countries made vaccine mandatory by law ]
  3. Educate the public and spread awareness with the help of NGO’s, people, governments, etc.

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Way forwarded – 

There are a lot of things India can do to reduce vaccine hesitancy as shown above. The country needs collaborative effects and an increase in awareness and education regarding the vaccine.

Educating the public will be helpful in the long run.

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