Universal Immunization Programme Decoded

India’s Universal Immunisation Programme (U.I.P.) is one of the largest in the world in terms of quantities of vaccine used, the number of beneficiaries, the number of Immunisation session organised, the geographical spread and diversity of areas covered. The national policy of Immunisation of all children during the first year of life with DPT, OPV, BCG to complete the series of primary vaccination before reaching the age of one year was adopted in 1978 with the lunching of EPI to increase the Immunisation coverage in infancy to 80%.

Universal Immunisation programme UIP was launched in 1985 in a phased manner.


The measles vaccine was added in 1985 and in 1990 Vit A supplementation was added to the program. It became a part of Child Survival and Safe Motherhood Programme in 1992 and is currently one of the key areas under National Rural Health Mission(NRHM) since 2005. The program consists of vaccination for nine diseases- tuberculosis, diphtheria, pertussis (whooping cough), tetanus, poliomyelitis, measles,Hepatitis B, Diarrhoea,Japanese Encephalitis and Pneumonia. Hepatitis B was added to the UIP in 2007. Thus, UIP has 9 vaccine preventable diseases in the program.

The Vaccination Schedule under the UIP is:

  • BCG (Bacillus Calmette Guerin) 1 dose at Birth (upto 1 year if not given earlier)
  • DPT (Diphtheria, Pertussis and Tetanus Toxoid) 5 doses; Three primary doses at 6,10,14 weeks and two booster doses at 16-24 months and 5 Years of age
  • OPV (Oral Polio Vaccine) 5 doses; 0 dose at birth, three primary doses at 6,10 and 14 weeks and one booster dose at 16-24 months of age
  • Hepatitis B vaccine 4 doses; 0 dose within 24 hours of birth and three doses at 6, 10 and 14 weeks of age.
  • Measles 2 doses; first dose at 9-12 months and second dose at 16-24months of age
  • TT (Tetanus Toxoid) 2 doses at 10 years and 16 years of age
  • TT – for pregnant woman two doses or one dose if previously vaccinated within 3 Year

In 2014 it was announced that four vaccines were added to the program, namely rotavirus, rubella and Japanese encephalitis, as well as the injectable polio vaccine. In addition, Japanese Encephalitis (JE vaccine) vaccine was introduced in 112 endemic districts in campaign mode in phased manner from 2006-10 and has now been incorporated under the Routine Immunisation Programme.

Mission Indradhanush:-

  • The Indian government aims to give maximum protection to the children against Vaccine Preventable Diseases (VPDs).
  • ‘Mission Indradhanush’ was launched in December 2014 to fully immunize more than 89 lakh children who are either unvaccinated or partially vaccinated.
  • In two phases of ‘Mission Indradhanush’ spread over April 2015 to July 2015 and October 2015 to January 2016 a total of 1.42 crore children and 36.7 lakh women were immunized in 20 lakh immunization sessions.
  • The gains made in ‘Mission Indradhanush’ have led to health systems strengthening, which provides us a good opportunity for the introduction of a new vaccine and ensuring the reach of immunization program to each and every child.
  • India’s UIP will provide free vaccines against 12 life threatening diseases, to 27 million children annually, the largest birth cohort in the world. IPV has been introduced in six states from 30 Nov 2015 for provide double protection against Polio.

Aim Of Mission Indradhanush:-

  • By 2020, Mission Indradhanush aims to immunize at least 90 per cent of the children and women who have so far remained unvaccinated or did not receive the full recommended doses.
  • It focuses on 201 high-priority districts and marginalized population groups where immunization coverage is low, exclusion and dropout rates for routine immunization are high, and the risk for disease outbreaks, including polio, is only too real.

Read more about Mission Indradhanush from here : MISSION INDRADHANUSH

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