In addition to the existing Polio, Drops Vaccine campaigns the Indian government will introduce Injection Polio Vaccine (IPV) in Puducherry. This comes under the Universal Immunisation Programme in the Union Territory.
According to K.V. Raman, Director of Health, these injections will be effective from April 25.
Though India is free of polio virus, it can persist due to the virus found in the neighboring countries of Pakistan and Afghanistan.
This comes as a preventive step to fight against the disease.
The existing oral polio vaccine uses on live polio virus and can occasionally revert to virulence, and there was always a chance of having a live polio virus in the community. With IPV, however, there were no such risks.
Puducherry had decided to introduce the inject able vaccine as part of a global switch from trivalent oral polio vaccine (TOPV) to bivalent oral polio vaccine (BOPV) in the immunization programme. The Government had decided to replace TOPV with BOPV discontinuing vaccine for stage 2.
The TOPV contained a vaccine for stage 1, 2 and 3 of polio infection and BOPV would now have a vaccine for stage 1 and 3 diseases.
The IPV would be administered in two fractional doses (0.1 ml each) for the newborns with the existing oral polio vaccines.
The IPV dosage comes in two steps. The first dose is injected within few weeks after birth, and the second dose will be given after 14 weeks in addition to the existing bivalent vaccines in all government institutions.
The last cases of wild polio were reported in West Bengal and Gujarat in the country on 13 January 2011. However, on 27 March 2014, World Health Organization (WHO) declared India a polio free country, since no cases of wild polio had been reported in previous three years.
By the mid-2015, only Afghanistan and Pakistan were declared with wild polio cases. The new vaccine has already been introduced in the other southern states of the country.