Serum Institute Of India ropes in Bollywood star Kareena Kapoor Khan to spread awareness about vaccines
Serum Institute of India (SII), one of the largest vaccine manufacturers in the world, on Thursday launched a campaign to spread awareness about the importance of immunisation with Bollywood star Kareena Kapoor Khan as its face.
Khan is the campaign ambassador for Swasth Immunised India – a nationwide vaccination and immunisation campaign. SII is partnering Network 18 for the campaign that will focus on building a robust network to spread awareness on the need for childhood immunisation leading to a healthier India.
Speaking at the launch event in Mumbai, Khan said, “Swasth Immunised India is a great initiative to promote and educate families on the importance of vaccination and providing a healthy life to children. This cause is extremely close to my heart as being a mother, I value the importance of immunizing my child from dangerous diseases. Due to lack of accessibility and affordability our country still witnesses the largest number of infant deaths. It is high time that we come together and take it upon us to be the changemakers. I am really excited and feel honoured to be a part of this journey with Adar and Natasha Poonawalla’s Serum Institute and Network18. I hope that through this campaign we are able to educate and influence every parent leading to a healthier India.”
India has a vaccination cover of about 70 percent, according to figures available with the Union ministry of health. But the diphtheria outbreak in several northern states last year was a reminder how gaps still remain in the reach of a vaccine that is among the oldest in the universal immunisation programme
The year-long campaign will witness Kareena advocating the urgency and need of vaccination among the marginalized sections of the society. Vaccination is the most cost-effective method to tackle life-threatening diseases.
In the recent past India has successfully eradicated Polio and Small Pox but with vaccine hesitancy on the rise across the world, the campaign comes at a crucial juncture. India has a vaccination cover of about 70 percent, according to figures available with the Union ministry of health. But the diphtheria outbreak in several northern states last year was a reminder how gaps still remain in the reach of a vaccine that is among the oldest in the universal immunisation programme.
Adar Poonawalla, CEO, Serum Institute of India said, “Swasth Immunised India is a step towards the goal of a completely immunised India. The campaign’s core objective is to address the persistent problem of miscommunication regarding vaccination and immunisation in our country thereby encouraging the people to participate and administer necessary vaccinations to infants, children and expectant mothers. Being a parent with a strong personality, conviction and a liberal mind, Kareena Kapoor Khan’s support will help us penetrate into the deepest pockets of the country. We hope that as the voice of change, she can help influence the masses to understand and accept that vaccine administration is an important aspect of an infant’s growth.”