Article by
Dani Reiter
Updated
November 16th, 2019

10 Million Pakistan Children To Receive Typhoid Vaccination

Pakistan launching Expanded Program on Immunization for TCV vaccinations in Sindh province

pakistani children running happy

Typhoid fever is a continuing public health threat in many low- and middle-income countries around the world.

But, routine vaccine prevention programs have not been implemented in most countries.

To address this shortcoming, the World Health Organization (WHO) issued a revised policy on typhoid vaccines in 2018. This new policy follows evidence-based recommendations by the WHO Strategic Advisory Group of Experts on immunization for routine and catch-up vaccination with typhoid conjugate vaccines (TCV).

Prevention through vaccination is one of the most effective solutions to reduce the burden of typhoid in endemic areas, says the WHO.

The good news is the government of Pakistan is launching an Expanded Program on Immunization for TCV vaccination campaign in the Sindh province, beginning November 18, 2019, reported Incpak on November 13, 2019.

Sindh is one of the 4 provinces of Pakistan, located in the southeast of the country. 

More than 15,000 people have been affected in the current outbreak, the first-ever reported ceftriaxone-resistant typhoid outbreak. 

Over 8,000 vaccination teams working with local Union Councils throughout Sindh will target 10.1 million children, disclosed by Dr. Akram Sultan, Project Director, in Sindh.

After first being introduced in the Sindh Province, which is the center of an ongoing extensively drug-resistant (XDR) typhoid outbreak, the TCV vaccine will next be introduced in Punjab Province in 2020, and then nationally in 2021.

XDR infections do not respond to most antibiotics.

The WHO prequalified the first conjugate vaccine to prevent typhoid fever called Typbar-TCV® developed by Indian pharmaceutical company Bharat Biotech, in 2018.

The Typbar-TCV vaccine contains polysaccharide of Salmonella typhi Ty2 conjugated to Tetanus Toxoid.

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The Typbar-TCV vaccine is a 1-dose, injected intramuscularly, that is expected to provide long-lasting immunity in adults, children, and infants 6 months of age and older. 

The WHO has recommended the TCV vaccine for use in all typhoid-endemic countries because of its higher efficacy compared to previously used typhoid vaccines.

Additionally, the Typbar-TCV vaccine should also help to curb the frequent use of antibiotics for treatment of presumed typhoid fever, and thus help slow the increase in antibiotic resistance in Salmonella Typhi, says the WHO.

About 300 people get typhoid fever in the United States each year. Most typhoid cases in the USA are from people who have recently traveled internationally, says the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC).

Typhoid, a serious illness caused by Salmonella Typhi, is spread through contaminated food and water. In addition, WASH solutions (water, sanitation, and hygiene) should be promoted alongside TCV introduction.

Typhoid symptoms of typhoid include lasting high fevers, weakness, stomach pains, headache, and loss of appetite. Some patients have constipation, and some have a rash. Internal bleeding and death can occur but are rare, reports the CDC.

Typhoid vaccines are recommended for:

  • Travelers to parts of the world where typhoid is common  Note: typhoid vaccine is not 100% effective and is not a substitute for being careful about what you eat or drinkn 
  • People in close contact with a typhoid carrier
  • Laboratory workers who work with Salmonella Typhi bacteria

There are two vaccines to prevent typhoid. One is an inactivated (killed) vaccine gotten as an injection and the other is a live, attenuated (weakened) vaccine, which is taken orally.

The CDC says any vaccine can cause side effects, which should be reported to a healthcare provider.

Typhoid Vaccine news published by Vax-Before-Travel