Chennai, Jan 31 (Agency) As Tamil Nadu stpped into 17th polio-free year, the pulse polio immunisiation drive to vaccinate 70.26 lakh children aged below five was held across the State today. Chief Minister Edappadi K Palaniswami launched the drive by administering polio vaccine drops to a child at his Camp office on the Greenways Road in the city. In all 43,051 booths were established at all primary health centres, government hospitals, Integrated Child Development Services centres, noon-meal centres, schools and other important places to give vaccine drops to children upto the age of five. Transit booths were set up in compliance with COVID-19 guidelines at major bus stands, railway stations, toll plazas, checkpoints and airports. Mobile teams also administered the drops to children living in remote, inaccessible and migrant areas.
Children immunised recently under the routine schedule and the newborns were also given the oral polio vaccine. To identify the missed out children, marking was done for all vaccinated children on the left little finger. Private paediatricians and private hospitals also joined the vaccination drive. The Health Department has deployed over 3,000 government vehicles for the drive and about two lakh personnel of the government departments and volunteers were involved in the exercise. Thanks to the successful implementation of the pulse polio immunisation campaigns, the State entered the 17th polio- free year. Health department officials said it was essential to sustain the status and protect children from wild polio virus.