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Flu Vaccines to Children Before Monsoon Will Curb Covid Cases: Maharashtra Panel | India News

MUMBAI: The state Covid task force and the newly formed pediatric task force have jointly asked the state government to immunize all children with the influenza vaccine before the monsoon. At a meeting on Sunday, doctors from both groups told CM Uddhav Thackeray that administering the flu vaccine would help curb the incidence of flu, which in turn would help decongest hospitals and avoid unnecessary testing.
Although the influenza vaccine that contains two subtypes of influenza A and two lineages of influenza B is widely available in the market, it is not part of the vaccines administered under the national immunization program. The vaccine costs Rs 1,500-Rs2,000 for a single injection.
Dr. Sanjay Oak, chair of the Covid state task force, told the CM: “We are of the opinion that the flu vaccine should be proactively reported. Since it is expensive, it is mainly the middle class and the upper class that can afford it. At the state level, we can think about reducing the cost or giving it to every child for at least the next six months. ”
Echoing him, Dr. Suhas Prabhu, who heads the pediatric task force, told the CM that at least this year, the state can make an exception and give everyone the vaccine.
Thackeray said the state will consider the suggestion. “However, we need more clarity on whether asymptomatic Covid-positive children can take it,” he said, adding that the task force should provide guidance.
Dr. Vijay Yewale, also a member of the pediatric task force, said that the flu is also a respiratory illness. “The vaccine has been time-tested and is routinely administered to children under the age of five. It can prevent a respiratory ailment, especially in children with chronic diseases or comorbidities, “he added.
They stressed that children who may have missed their routine immunization doses should complete their program. “It is safe for a child to get vaccinated with BCG, measles, rubella, or any vaccine that is missed four weeks after the onset of Covid symptoms,” Yewale said.
(Entries by Sujit mahamulkar)



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