Sumbawanga — A TOTAL of 9,959 children below the age of five years in Sumbawanga Municipality in Rukwa Region will be vaccinated against Rotavirus diarrhoea and Pneumonia, the Municipal Medical in-Charge, Dr Ally Makori Mussa, disclosed.
According to Dr Mussa, statistics show that in 2011, about 5,927 children under five years of age were attacked by diarrhoea, among them 27 died. The disease is contracted through contaminated water and food.
Similarly, in 2011 a total of 4,134 children under the age of five years were admitted to health facilities in the municipality as a result of pneumonia and 41 of them died. According to Dr Mussa, pneumonia is a lung infection that can make a patient "cough, run a fever, and have a hard time breathing For most people, pneumonia can be treated at home and it often clears within 2 to 3 weeks But older adults, babies, and people with other diseases can become very ill They may need to be admitted to hospital," he added.
He further expounded that the Ministry of Health and Social Welfare has seen the importance of preventing pneumonia and diarrhoeas which are preventable diseases by introducing and adding two more vaccines including Rotarix and prenumonia (PCV 13) in the national vaccination programme.
"Both vaccines including 2,150 bottles of Rotarix and 3,250 bottles of PCV 13 have already been distributed to all health facilities in the area. So, we are confident to achieve the exercise 100 per cent as our drive is to reach all the targeted children here in the municipality," hinted Dr Mussa.