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GS-III : S&T

National Vaccine Day-March 16th

  • 16 March, 2021

  • 5 Min Read

National Vaccine Day-March 16th

Introduction

  • By virtue of extensive immunity due to oral vaccination, the last polio case was reported in India in January 2011.
  • Subsequently, India was declared polio-free in 2014.
  • The Government of India observes National Vaccination Day every year on March 16 to convey the importance of vaccination to its people.
  • In the wake of the COVID-19 pandemic, the significance of this day becomes even more pertinent.
  • The firm conviction of Prime Minister Narendra Modi ensured that Aatmanirbhar Bharat (self-reliant India) has its own COVID-19 vaccine.
  • This will help India emerge as a global leader in the post-COVID-19 era.

National Vaccination Day

  • National Vaccination Day also called the National Immunization Day, is celebrated every year on March 16 to convey the importance of vaccination to the entire nation.
  • The National Vaccination Day, also called the National Immunization Day, is celebrated every year on March 16 to convey the importance of vaccination to the entire nation.
  • The day was first observed in the year 1995, the year on which India started Pulse Polio Programme.
  • This year, the National Vaccination Day is important as the country has started its biggest Covid-19 immunization programme early this year and has already crossed the 30 million mark.

 

Medicines are global goods

  • Initiative of making vaccines widely available for other developing countries firmly established India as the ‘pharmacy of the world’ and sent out the message that medical products must be dealt with as global public goods.
  • Since the beginning of the pandemic, we have been leading global efforts to mitigate the challenges by supplying medicines and generic drugs to other countries.
  • This shows that while becoming aatma nirbhar, we are proving our mettle at the global level.
  • As of March, we have supplied vaccines to over 70 countries while ensuring that our domestic demand is met.
  • The IITs came up with incredible innovations like low-cost portable ventilators, affordable AI-powered COVID-19 test kits, drones for sanitisation, and cheap and effective PPE kits and masks.

Research and innovation in NEP-2020

  • As we now step into a post-COVID era, it becomes more imperative to strengthen research and innovation.
  • Promotion of R&D: Through the National Education Policy (NEP) 2020, we have already taken a step forward in this direction. The NEP aims at improving the research and innovation landscape in India.
  • Incubation centres: It proposes that higher education institutions (HEIs) should focus on research and innovation by establishing start-up incubation centres, technology development centres and interdisciplinary research.
  • Promotion of innovation: The HEIs should also focus on developing mechanisms and organising competitions to promote innovation among student communities.
  • Multidisciplinary Education and Research Universities: To attain the highest global standards in education, the NEP also recommends setting up Multidisciplinary Education and Research Universities, which will be on a par with IITs and IIMs.
  • National Research Foundation (NRF): Before the commencement of the next academic session 2021-22, the National Research Foundation (NRF) will be established under the Principal Scientific Adviser, which will transform India’s research culture.
    • An outlay of ?50,000 crore for the next five years has been allocated for NRF in the Budget.

 

Source: TH

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