"Over 17 crore children below five years will be administered polio drops as part of the government drive to support polio eradication program," said a release.
‘As part of the polio eradication program, over 17 crore children below five years were given polio drops.’
Union Health Minister J.P. Nadda, also present on the occasion, said the Universal Immunization Program was focusing on protecting children from diseases and has introduced several new vaccines, like pneumococcal conjugate vaccine, rotavirus vaccine and measles-rubella vaccine.
"To provide additional protection to the children, the government has also introduced the injectable inactivated polio vaccine in the routine immunization program," Nadda said.
Pointing out that the government was making all efforts to protect children from diseases, he said the vaccines under the program must reach the last child of the country.
"Along with the Universal Immunization Program, we have also launched the Mission Indradhanush to achieve more than 90 per cent immunization coverage. Over 3.39 crore children and 87 lakh pregnant women have been vaccinated through the Mission Indradhanush drives," Nadda said.
Strengthening of the immunization program has contributed to the decline of infant mortality from 39 per 1,000 live births in 2014 to 32 in 2017, he added.
Nadda also appreciated the efforts of state governments and supporting organisations, like the WHO, UNICEF and Rotary International, for strengthening the polio program as well as other immunization initiatives.
He applauded the efforts of thousands of volunteers, frontline workers and health officials for tireless work for keeping the country polio-free.