25 April 2013

Somalia Launches Vaccine Against Five Childhood Diseases

Photo: © Shryock/UNICEF
The country has launched a new five-in-one-vaccine for children (file photo).

Somali government authorities on Wednesday (April 24th) launched a new vaccine that protects against five childhood diseases, the United Nations Children's Fund (UNICEF) announced.

Simultaneous launches were held in Mogadishu, Garowe and Hargeisa, with representatives from the World Health Organisation, the GAVI Alliance and UNICEF present.

The pentavalent vaccine inoculates children against diphtheria, tetanus, pertussis, Hepatitis B and Haemophilus influenza type B.

Somalia has received 1.3 million doses for 2013, which will immunise the 425,000 children born in the country every year, as each child needs three doses.

The vaccine launch will be accompanied by an outreach campaign to raise awareness among parents on the importance of immunising their children.

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