HA NOI (VNS)- Around 23 million children aged between 9 months and 14 years will be provided with the Rubella vaccine for free under the Expanded Programme for Immunisation (EPI), supported by the Global Alliance for Vaccines and Immunisation (GAVI).
EPI director Nguyen Tran Hien told Viet Nam News that donations of the vaccine and syringes had been approved and will go ahead as soon as official confirmation is received from GAVI and sent to the Ministry of Health.
Hien did not reveal the value of the donation, but if it goes ahead as planned it will be the largest GAVI project in Viet Nam so far.
He confirmed that the vaccine will be provided for free to all children in the age bracket nation-wide from 2013-14 in an effort to prevent congenital malformation to children in Viet Nam. The vaccine will then be given to 9-month old children in the annual immunisation programme from 2015.
The World Health Organisation have said that around 30,000-45,000 children are born with congenital malformations every year in Viet Nam due to a variety of factors. One common cause is the mother suffering from the Rubella virus during gestation. They added that up to 90 per cent of children are born with malformations if their mothers had Rubella during the first three months of pregnancy. – VNS