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A New Vaccination Against Chickenpox in the UAE

A New Vaccination Against Chickenpox in the UAEThe Health Authority – (HAAD), the official authority managing healthcare sector in , announced that it has included vaccine, varicella, to the national immunization program.  The new vaccine is attenuated form of the virus that provides protection against . Starting from today, the vaccine will be added to the program applied on children born after the first of September 2009. Vaccine can be administered to children starting from the age of 12 months.

Introduction of the new Chickenpox vaccine represents a new step in the plans carried out by HAAD to promote the public health in the Emirate. HAAD is revising and updating the vaccination program according to the diseases in Abu Dhabi, WHO recommendations, and the costs of application. Immunizing against Chickenpox is already taking place in several countries, for instance, The United States managed to achieve significant reduction in the incidence of the disease. The number of new cases dropped from 4 million cases annually before starting vaccination to 400,000 cases in 2005.

The Section Head Communication Diseases, Dr. Farida Al Hosani, commented “During 2009 HAAD received notification of 7219 cases of Chicken pox. Introducing the vaccine to the national immunization program will help to combat this highly contagious illness. While the vaccine has been registered in the for some time, it has previously been targeted at specific groups.” started to apply its national immunization program starting from 1978. The program begun with 6 basic vaccines against Diphtheria, Pertusis, Polio, Measles, Tetanus, and Tuberculosis. Since then, the program has been updated several times to include more vaccines. The recently-introduced Chickenpox vaccine will be available starting from the 3rd of October 2010.

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