New Delhi, April 28 (IANS). Emphasizing on the need for timely vaccination for children as well as adults, experts on Thursday said that apart from healthy and nutritious food and exercise, vaccines also play an important role in long life nutrition.
The World Health Organization (WHO) marks the last week of April as World Immunization Week between 24 and 30 April. This year’s theme is ‘Longer Life for All’.
According to the WHO, the purpose of the week is to “highlight the necessary collective action and promote the use of vaccines to protect people of all ages from disease”. It is estimated that around 1.5 million deaths worldwide could be prevented by timely vaccination.
Vaccination has proved successful in eradicating many diseases such as polio and smallpox. Vaccination has helped prevent illness and death associated with infectious diseases such as diarrhoea, measles, pneumonia, and has resulted in high gains in education and economic development. Recently, shots developed against COVID-19 have also proven to reduce the risk of hospitalization and death.
“Vaccines have proven their effectiveness time and again and people who are vaccinated today have a better chance of living,” Dr Raja Dhar, a pulmonologist from CMRI, Kolkata, told IANS.
“Vaccines are the most important preventive measure that also helps with longevity and reduces morbidity rates. This is the best time to talk about vaccines because there are more than 29 vaccine-preventable infections. When vaccinations are timely. If given, immunity gets stronger. Age,” said Dr. Agam Vora, a Mumbai-based pulmonologist.
However, pandemic-related disruptions, growing inequalities in access to vaccines, and the diversion of resources from routine immunization have left many children without protection against measles and other vaccine-preventable diseases.
In 2020, 23 million children missed basic childhood vaccines through routine health services, the highest number since 2009 and 3.7 million more than in 2019. As a result, the world is also witnessing outbreaks of infectious diseases such as measles and hepatitis.
“The COVID-19 pandemic has disrupted vaccination services, crippled the health system, and we now see a resurgence of deadly diseases, including measles. As for many other diseases, the impact of these disruptions to immunization services for decades to come. WHO Director-General Dr. Tedros Adhanom Ghebreyesus said in a recent statement.
“Now is the time to get the necessary vaccinations back on track and start a catch-up campaign so that everyone can have access to these life-saving vaccines,” he said.
The WHO noted that worldwide measles cases increased by 79 percent in the first two months of 2022 compared to the same period in 2021. The Global Health Agency has reported at least 169 cases of acute hepatitis of unknown origin in about 12 countries.
Experts say that while vaccinating children is a common topic of discussion, adult immunization is also the need of the hour.
Adults, and elderly people, such as those with underlying conditions such as respiratory disease, diabetes, high blood pressure, and kidney diseases, are more vulnerable to infections that can be effectively prevented by vaccines, which may also help extend life expectancy. Will do
Dhar said that according to the National Statistics Office report, the elderly population in India is going to increase by 41 percent, and more people are falling prey to diseases, the biggest benefit of vaccination is reducing hospitalization and severity. have to be done, Dhar said.
“To increase vaccination coverage in India, everyone needs to take ownership of getting themselves vaccinated as per schedule. Only then will we be able to be part of a healthier community,” he said.