Zanzibar — HEALTH officers in Zanzibar said there are still a few parents on the Isles who are averse in making sure their infants and children are vaccinated, hindering efforts to achieve the Millenium Development Goal in ensuring every child is immunized.
"The response has been good in many areas as over 90 per cent of the children have been vaccinated.
But we still have frequent outbreak of measles is some areas like in Unguja West District," said Mr Abdulhamid Ameir, from the Department of Immunization, Ministry of Health.
He was speaking at the launch of the fourth edition of the African Vaccination Week (April 24-27, 2014, under the theme, 'Vaccination-a shared responsibility' aimed at increasing stakeholders' awareness on the importance of vaccination.
He appealed to mothers and fathers to ensure that all children are vaccinated for the health and survival of the child.
The African Vaccination Week initiative aims to increase immunization indicators, through improved advocacy, communication tools and integrated health services and activities.
Mr Abdallah Mwinyi Khamis- Urban West Regional Commissioner (RC) said in his speech at the event held in Chumbuni area, that vaccination remains important for the family, and nation at large.
"Vaccination prevents infections and protects us all," he said. "Through vaccination, children minimize chances of contracting polio, measles, and other killer diseases.
Kindly make sure that all your children are vaccinated," said the Regional Commissioner at the Chumbuni vaccination centre after the launch.
Vaccination officers said the nationwide exercise will go on throughout the year on the Isles.
Everybody has a role to play in fighting vaccine-preventable diseases such as polio, whooping cough, measles, tetanus, diphtheria, influenza, diarrhoea, pneumonia and hepatitis.
Mwinyi emphasised that the theme highlights the role and importance of governments, health care workers, parents, families and communities in supporting immunization.