Vanguard (Lagos)

Nigeria: Immunisation - Lagos Targets 4.3 Million

Lagos — LAGOS State Government, yesterday, said no fewer than 4.3 million children under five years old would be captured in the state during the next round of National Immunisation Plus Days exercise beginning tomorrow.

State Commissioner for Health, Dr. Jide Idris, who announced this, urged members of the public to ensure a high degree of good personal and environmental hygiene to reduce the risk of poliomyelitis infection in the state.

He said in December, 2012, a mop-up campaign against poliomyelitis was carried out where 105 per cent of the targeted population in the state was immunised against poliomyelitis.

Idris enjoined parents, guardians and care-givers to ensure the immunisation of their wards and children during the exercise and noted that maintenance of a clean environment through proper disposal of human and domestic waste was a collective responsibility.

According to him, "poliomyelitis which is one of the preventable childhood diseases that is highly infectious is transmitted through contaminated food and water, multiplies rapidly in the intestine from where it can invade the nervous system. Many infected persons have no symptoms but excrete the virus in their faeces through which other people can be infected through contamination.

"One in every 200 infect. ions of poliomyelitis leads to irreversible paralysis of the limbs, especially the legs.

"This is the reason why immunisation remains the most cost-effective strategy in disease prevention and health promotion, especially among children.

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