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Ministry gives free vaccines to children

Update: March, 27/2015 - 09:08
The Ministry of Health gave 19.4 million children across the country a combined measles and rubella vaccine in a campaign launched in September. — Photo suckhoedoisong

HA NOI (VNS) — The Ministry of Health gave 19.4 million children across the country a combined measles and rubella vaccine in a campaign launched in September.

The six-month campaign provided the combined vaccine free of charge to children between 9 months and 14 years old.

"To date, the country's largest-ever campaign has completed its activities in 50 of 63 provinces and cities nation-wide," said Dang Duc Anh, director of the National Institute of Hygiene and Epidemiology.

"Remaining provinces are striving to provide the vaccine to children who missed their routine doses during the past months. We could affirm that the combined measles-rubella vaccine is very safe," stressed the director.

Anh added that no serious adverse reactions were reported. Most side effects were normal, such as fever or swelling at the injection site.

Parents and local authorities have stayed involved in the process, contributing to a high vaccination rate: more than 95 per cent of children in the targeted provinces and cities were given a dose, according to Anh.

A US$34.6-million grant from the Global Alliance for Vaccines and Immunisation (GAVI) supported the vaccination programme.

Starting in July, the combined measles-rubella vaccine will be put into the EPI's regularly vaccination programme for children at 18 months. — VNS

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