India’s most populous state is a poor caretaker of its children and the dismal health statistics show Chief Minister Yogi Adityanath has his work cut out.
Newborn children are the most susceptible to infectious diseases and therefore face the greatest threat of loss of life from them. That is why the Indian government is so focused on an immunisation programme that can protect children by giving them vaccines for preventable diseases. Unfortunately no Indian state has been able to provide this immunisation cover to all its children. The southern state of Tamil Nadu, the leader in immunisation tables, has managed to reach 81 percent of its children. Goa, a small state in western India with a low population, has also not achieved full immunisation and is second-ranked at 79 percent. India’s most literate-state Kerala is third-ranked at 75 percent.
In comparison, Uttar Pradesh, is ranked at a lowly 27, having achieved barely 44 percent coverage and is ranked ahead of only tribal state Nagaland. According to UNICEF, lack of education and poverty are directly linked to the poor vaccination trends.
Uttar Pradesh suffers mainly because many of its people are poor and uneducated, with little or no knowledge or understanding of how and why immunisation works for not only the health of their children, but also their intellectual development. Another big problem is that of migration. Many people move out of the state in search of livelihood or education or other facilities. Though they could avail of vaccination programmes in any Indian state, they often fail to do so.
Better education, improved health services, greater awareness campaigns are the need of the hour.
Read more on this story in Hindi by Lokesh Verma for the Patrika, here: http://www.patrika.com/news/noida/uttar-pradesh-at-the-bottom-in-children-care-hindi-news-1574492/