Clinical Relevance of Vaccines and Immunization In India

Clinical Relevance of Vaccines and Immunization In India


Immunization is one of the crucial medical interventions. Throughout history, it has helped protect millions against some of the most devastating and fatal diseases ever to befall humanity. In fact, it has been so effective that some diseases once regarded as fatal are now extinct or easily manageable. Yet, many unheard-of diseases continue to emerge, making immunization even more crucial. 

Vaccines lower the risks of contracting a disease by working with the body's natural defenses to build protection. They prevent people from diseases like diphtheria, tetanus, pertussis, influenza, and measles. Currently, there are vaccines that prevent more than 20 life-threatening diseases, enabling people of all ages to live longer and healthier lives.

The common belief is that immunization is only in children; however, it is not so. There are age-specific vaccines and recommendations for every country. Even adults and elders may need shots of vaccines to enhance immunity.

Vaccination/Immunization is done in the doctor's clinics/hospitals/primary care centers and in the various immunization camps organized from time to time.

Importance of Immunization

Immunization is a primary element of primary health care and an absolute human right. It also represents one of the best health assets money can purchase. Vaccines are also essential to prevent and control infectious disease outbreaks. They ensure global health security and serve as a vital tool in the fight against antimicrobial resistance.

On inoculating a vaccine against a specific disease, the body receives it as a mimicking natural infection. The vaccine possesses the dead or weakened form of the virus or bacteria injected into the body. The body's immune system does not recognize the strength of the vaccine virus and thus triggers a red alert, considering it dangerous. In response, the immune system quickly produces antibodies to fight and clear the virus. Each time the body fights against a certain disease or infection, it strengthens. So, when a person catches a similar infection in the future, for real, the immunity responds effectively. Hence, without catching a disease, the antibodies produced by the body eliminate the virus.

A report by World Health Organization states that immunization averts nearly 2-3 million deaths yearly, rendering protection from diphtheria, pneumonia, pertussis (whooping cough), rotavirus diarrhea, rubella, tetanus, smallpox, Polio, mumps, and measles. 

Here is the clinical relevance of vaccines and immunizations in India:

It saves lives. Modern vaccines and oral drops have rescued children from various dangerous and fatal diseases. Due to successful immunization campaigns, some historically prevalent diseases have now been eradicated, such as smallpox.

It protects Generations. Immunization has saved the world from some severe debilitating diseases. For example, Polio has now been eradicated from the country, saving current and future generations from suffering from it. Moreover, diseases like rubella can also pass from an unvaccinated mother to their unborn child. Hence vaccinating people today will prevent the emergence of serious diseases in future generations and ensure their health while growing up.

It saves money. In developing countries like India, where a large section of the population belongs to minimal income groups, accommodating a family member suffering from a preventable disease can be difficult, as it can consume all financial savings and push the families towards economic instability. This can be bypassed by receiving the correct vaccine at the right time. 

It prevents children from various types of disabilities. Numerous disability rights movements worldwide are developing newer ways toward a more accessible, inclusive, and sustainable world. However, beyond these steps, it is vital to acknowledge the advantages of childhood immunization against disability. The most robust example is Polio, which most countries have managed through oral doses. Another example is measles which has the potential to cause blindness, deafness, and some shapes of mental disability among surviving children. 

It also protects your family and friends. Some preventable diseases can be communicable, making close contact with compromised immunity to succumb instead of the actual patient. The popular example being coronavirus [SARS CoV 2]. It is important to vaccinate yourself to protect other older or sick family members and children who may be immunocompromised. 

It prevents autoimmune disorders. Many of us may not have a healthy immune system. Some may be born with impaired immunity, while others may fall prey to autoimmune conditions. Immunization boosts the body's immunity. A stronger immunity imparts good health. Hence immunization is a self-mechanism.

It can prevent the occurrence of an epidemic. Some infections may turn epidemic and affect the whole community. It is particularly relevant for a densely populated country like India. Immunized people have low to no risk of epidemic diseases. Furthermore, it may also check the spread cases of infectious diseases containing the epidemic.

Vaccines are safe. Vaccines are safe and effective. All vaccines undergo lengthy and careful reviews by scientists, doctors, and the federal government to ensure they are safe.

The Bottom line

Vaccination is an important armamentarium via which we have managed to eradicate many severe diseases that have killed people in groups and bunches in the past. However, millions of infants escape their complete immunization with routine vaccines. Hence there is an urgent need to communicate better the health benefits of vaccination and the dangers of not immunizing.

It is important to learn that immunization saves the receiver's life as well as those living around it. Hence, it is a civic duty to ensure complete immunization of yourself and your family.

Mrs. Mayuri Mathur

Mrs. Mayuri Mathur is a Senior Medical Writer (Patient education and digital) and seasoned content creator with a rich tapestry of expertise spanning over ten years. With a diverse background in content creation, she brings a wealth of experience to the table, from crafting insightful medical articles to developing comprehensive patient education materials, dynamic press releases, and captivating brochures and website content. Throughout her illustrious career, she has demonstrated an exceptional knack for distilling complex medical concepts into easily understandable content, making her a trusted resource for both professionals and lay audiences alike. Her meticulous attention to detail and innate creativity have enabled her to deliver content that not only informs but also engages and inspires. Whether elucidating intricate medical procedures or crafting compelling marketing materials, her versatility and dedication shine through in every project she undertakes. Her passion for writing, coupled with her profound understanding, makes her an invaluable asset to any team or project. In a constantly evolving digital landscape, where effective communication is paramount, Mrs. Mayuri Mathur stands out as a beacon of excellence, consistently delivering top-notch content that resonates with audiences across diverse platforms.

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