While Nepal’s Extended Immunization Program (EPI) provides free vaccines to children from birth to 15 months of age. These vaccines protect children from 11 diseases, such as measles, rubella, polio, and pneumonia. However, there are some other vaccines that are not included in the national schedule but are recommended by the World Health Organization (WHO) and other health authorities for children in Nepal. This blog explores some of the most important vaccines not included in the EPI schedule, ensuring your child’s health beyond the basics.

1. MMR (Measles, Mumps, and Rubella): This vaccine protects against three highly contagious diseases that can cause pneumonia, encephalitis, and birth defects. While EPI covers Measles and Rubella, Mumps is missing. Two MMR doses are recommended, ideally at 12 and 18 months.

2. Varicella (Chickenpox): While usually mild in childhood, this itchy illness can lead to complications like pneumonia and shingles later. Vaccinating children aged 12 months and older with a single dose offers long-lasting protection.

3. Influenza (Flu): The flu can be severe for young children. Vaccination is highly recommended for all children aged 6 months and older, with two doses spaced at least 4 weeks apart for those receiving it for the first time.

4. Hepatitis A: This liver infection from contaminated food or water can be debilitating and even fatal. Two Hepatitis A doses are crucial for lasting protection. The first dose should be given between 12 and 23 months of age, with the second at least 6 months later. Children older than 2 years who haven’t received the two doses should complete the series.

5. Hepatitis B: While included in the EPI, its importance needs reiterating. This vaccine protects against a potentially life-threatening liver infection. Three doses are recommended, with the first ideally given at birth.

Remember: Consult your child’s pediatrician for the right vaccination schedule based on their individual needs and risk factors.

Protect your child from preventable illnesses. By exploring these additional vaccines beyond the EPI, you’re investing in their health and well-being for years to come.

These vaccines should be given according to the following schedule, which is based on the WHO recommendations and the availability of the vaccines in Nepal:

VaccineFirst doseSecond doseBrand name
MMR9 months15 monthsTRESIVAC (Rs 290)
Varicella12 months15 monthsOKAVAX INJ (Rs 2000 )
Flu6 monthsAt least 4 weeks laterInfluvac Tetra (Rs 3500)
Hepatitis A12 months23 monthsAVAXIM-160U (Rs 3200)

You must buy the mentioned vaccines either from a private clinic or hospital, as they are not supplied by the government. Alternatively, you can purchase the vaccines from a reputable pharmacy and have them administered at a nearby vaccination center.

We hope this blog post has been helpful and informative for you. If you have any questions or comments, please feel free to leave them below. And don’t forget to share this post with your friends and family who may benefit from it. Thank you for reading!