Cuttack, June 2: Ravenshaw University today inked a memorandum of understanding with the University of Birmingham, UK, for working on a collaborative research project on polio vaccination.
An agreement has been signed between the department of history of Ravenshaw and the department of medicine, ethics, society and history of the University of Birmingham for the Welcome Trust-funded project called Ethics, Policy and Practice of Poliomyelitis Vaccination in Odisha: A case study in community, professional and governmental attitudes to mass public health programs in India.
“The research project will extensively deal with the attitude of parents, the Odisha government and other stakeholders involved in the polio immunisation programme. The state of primary health facilities in regional context would be also be looked into,” said head of history department at Ravenshaw Chandi Prasad Nanda.
Though the Odisha government claims there has not been any case of polio in the last couple of years in the state, the research team will study the reality in remote tribal areas where primary health facilities still remain a far cry.
The study will be conducted in Khurda and Mayurbhanj districts. Efforts would also be initiated to outline and explore the ethical issues that arise in relation to vaccination, said Nanda.
Another official of Ravenshaw University said the research study would be completed in two years and the findings would be sent to the Odisha government, Unicef, WHO and other organisations for necessary changes in policy and its implementation.
“A lot of people in India do not opt for mass vaccination programmes, which are happening in other countries as well, because of a number reasons. We want to explore these reasons and bring about a change in the attitude of the people,” said Angus Dawson, head of medicine, ethics, society and history department in the University of Birmingham.