Here’s Why NCOC Has Suspended COVID-19 Vaccination for Children

National Command and Operation Centre (NCOC) has suspended coronavirus vaccination for children aged between 12 to 15 years as the national measles and rubella vaccination campaign will be launched for more than 90 million children from Monday (today) for thirteen days.

“National MR campaign will be conducted from 15-27 November 2021 during which children aged 9 months to 15 years will be inoculated. The COVID-19 vaccine administration for children between 12-15 years will, therefore, remain suspended from 15-27 November 2021,” NCOC tweeted.

Member of Scientific Task Force on COVID-19, Prof Dr. Javed Akram, said that there is no research that suggests that coronavirus and measles vaccines can’t be given simultaneously.

“The decision has been taken because of the issue of logistics and to avoid vaccine hesitancy. As fever, pain in the arm, and other minor symptoms are similar in most of the vaccines, health authorities preferred not to administer two vaccines at the same time. After the vaccination around 5% of people have complained of fever, so it is an understandable step to suspend the COVID-19 vaccination for those who will be immunized against measles and rubella,” he said.

The nationwide campaign for the elimination of measles and rubella is part of a global initiative in which trained staff, including lady health workers, nurses, and vaccinators would visit door-to-door, reach out to children in public, private schools, madrassahs, and informal schools to vaccinate them.