NIGERIA: Primary Health Care Development Agency Embarks On Aggressive Campaign Against Measles

Map of Nigeria Showing Gombe State

By Ahmad Umar

Gombe (Nigeria)– Following the poor turnout recorded during the 2015 Measles Vaccination exercise in Gombe State, Northeast Nigeria, the Primary Health Care Development Agency has now embarked on an enlightenment campaign for positive results.

 The Deputy Director of Immunization in the Agency, Musa Ibrahim Kuna stated this during a meeting with Journalists on Thursday in Gombe, organised by the Agency preparatory to the sensitization on the 2017 Measles Campaign Vaccination scheduled for November 30 to December 15

 Kuna urged parents to retain and keep safe vaccination cards which would be issued during the exercise for the purpose of survey.

 He appreciated the state government for responding promptly by being the first state in Nigeria  to release its counterparts funding in the fight against measles, adding that proper supervision, of the exercise would be staggered across the state.

 Also speaking, the World Health Organisation (WHO) Cluster Consultant in the State, Raymond Dankoli, disclosed that between January to date 15 deaths and 864 suspected cases of measles were recorded.

The state, he said, also recorded outbreaks of the disease across 7 local government areas with Gombe Local Government  having the highest suspected measles infection, with 107 cases.

“Unlike similar exercise held in 2015 which failed to record the desired outcome, the agency having learnt  from the past, is poised to conduct a successful exercise this time around with a view to attaining 95 percent coverage”, he said.

Dankoli added that already, the agency has taken proactive steps in response to the disease outbreak by making available drugs for treating the disease, with trained staff carrying out surveillance with a view  to reporting new cases for prompt action.

Cluster Consultant said this year’s vaccination exercise will target children from 9-59 months, stressing that every child is expected to receive treatment irrespective of the child’s immunization status.

 “The 2015 experience was the worst. We want to make that of 2017 better. All measles deaths are preventable, ” he said.

 He said it has become necessary to partner with the media in order to sensitise the public as the success of the campaign depends on the number of children that turn out to be vaccinated.

 Dr Dankoli also spoke on the controversy surrounding previous exercises, particularly against the backdrop of orchestrated campaigns to discourage citizens from immunization, following the recent outbreak of monkey pox.

 While the agency is reaching out to relevant stakeholders such as traditional, religious and community leaders towards enlightening the citizens,  Dankoli assured that the agency  would not fold it’s arms to allow harmful products to be administered to the people.

 The WHO consultant urged parents to make present  their wards for vaccination once the exercise commences, stressing that donor agencies have spent billions of naira to supply the vaccines.

Posted by on 03/11/2017. Filed under Health, News. You can follow any responses to this entry through the RSS 2.0. You can leave a response or trackback to this entry

Please Leave a Reply