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Pediatrics/Importance of Pneumococcal and Rotavirus Vaccines


Respected Doctor,
As we know that Pneumococcal and Rotavirus Vaccines are Optional vaccines (as well as costly) in INDIA. These vaccines are not even included in Our national vaccination program. Is it essential to go for them in our country??

Hi Vivek,

Yes, both of these vaccines are recommended for routine use (NOT OPTIONAL) by Indian Academy of Pediatrics.

You can see the latest immunization schedule, last updated in July 2012 at:

WHO has strongly recommended of inclusion of both of these vaccines in National Schedule of Developing countries, including India. At present they are included in national schedules of over 93 countries, including Pakistan. Even Bangladesh is introducing these from September 2013. Democratic countries like India (especially with Coalition governments) have decision making process that is too slow as you know....Still, India has introduced Hib vaccine in national schedule in phased manner from last year (initially 5 states, now I think 11 states and likely to be pan-India from next year). Rotavirus vaccine and IPV (injectable polio vaccine) are likely to be included in National schedule from next year. With such a huge population, even this is a big achievement. Inclusion of Pneumococcal vaccine will take some time. Till then there is no choice but to take these vaccines privately, so as to prevent these killer infections in our children.

These vaccines APPEAR costly, but are not that much costly if you compare it with cost of hospitalization with any of these infections in any average hospital in India.

Best wishes,
Dr. Puneet Kumar,
Kumar Child Clinic, Dwarka,
New Delhi, India



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Dr. Puneet Kumar


I would be happy to answer general queries on prevention and treatment of ailments in newborn, infant, toddler, child or an adolescent. Needless to say, it will not be possible to answer any query that requires diagnosing, since it is not possible to examine a child online.


I have worked in various capacities (medical officer, resident, senior resident, consultant) in public as well as private sector in Pediatrics and Neonatology. Today, I have over 17 years of experience in the field.

Currently, I am running my own clinic (Kumar Child Clinic) in Dwarka, New Delhi and am attached to Lifeline Hospital, Dwarka as consultant pediatrics and neonatology. I am also developing my clinic website into a comprehensive child health/ parenting website (

(a) Chapter "National Immunization Schedule" in Frontiers of Social Pediatrics, Jaypee Publishers: 2nd edition, 2016. (b) Article, "All about Pertussis vaccines" in special issue of Indian Journal of Practical Pediatrics, July-Sept 2015 (c) Three chapters (DTP vaccines, Pneumococcal vaccines and Poliovirus vaccines) in "Textbook of Pediatrics for Post-graduates" First edition: 2015. (c) Chapter: "Alternative delivery methods of vaccines" in IAP textbook of Vaccines, First edition, 2014 (published by IAP/ Jaypee Brothers) (d) Special Article: "50 years of Immunization in India: Progress and Future" in January 2013 issue of Indian Pediatrics (e) Four chapters in "FAQ: Book on Vaccines and Immunization Practices" First edition, 2011 AND 2nd edition, 2015 published by Jaypee Brothers. (f) Three articles in special issue of Journal of Pediatric Sciences on “Controversies and Challenges in Pediatric Vaccination Today" in Sept, 2010. Co-edited the series also. (f) Regular column, “How do I treat” in Pediascene ( (g) Review article, “Role of Anti-Poliovirus Agents in Polio eradication and beyond” in Polio Pulse, April, 2008. (h) Chapter on “Acute Infectious Diarrhea” in Textbook of Infectious Diseases in Children. (An IAP Publication), 2007. 2nd edition in 2011. (i) Book-Review (IAP Pediatric Drug Formulary, 2004) in Pediascene, March 2005 ( ) (j) Case-report on Osteopetrosis. Jharkhand Journal of Pediatrics, Dec-2002.

After MBBS, I have done DNB residency in Pediatrics.

Awards and Honors
Winner of IAP practising pediatrician's quiz in 2001.

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