13 March 2018

Nigeria: Govt Takes Measles Vaccination to Prison Facilities

The Federal Government has said it would extend the 2017/2018 Measles Vaccination Campaign to prisons in order to vaccinate the children of the female inmates.

A consultant to the National Centre for Disease Control (NCDC) in the Federal Ministry of Health, Dr. Samuel Shauibu, said this at a one-day sensitization meeting with education stakeholders on measles vaccination campaign in Edo State.

Shaibu said health workers to vaccinate children between nine months and five years would visit worship centres and schools.

He said the exercise would run between March 8 to 20, and admonished parents and guardian to make their children available at the designated spots for immunization.

Shaibu commended Edo State government for showing support to the vaccination exercise with the sum of N11 million as the State's counterpart fund

He said Edo was one of the states that had the lowest measles outbreak in 2015 adding that a total of 13,893 suspected cases of measles was recorded with 92 laboratory confirmed cases across the federation in 2017.

The consultant urged parents to make their children available for the vaccination exercise because according to him, it's safe and effective. It has no side effect.

Also, the State Immunization Officer in the Ministry of Health, Mrs. Justina Aikhuele urged the media to sensitize parents on the benefits of getting their children vaccinated against Measles.

Meanwhile, Osun state government has said that about one million two hundred thousand children, between the ages of five months to five years, would be captured in the on-going immunization against measles in the state.

The state Commissioner for Health, Dr. Rafiu Isamotu, told journalists in Osogbo that the government would give the exercise priority attention in view of the importance children occupy in the society.

Isamotu who was represented by the Executive Secretary, State Primary Health Board, Dr. Kayode Adebayo Ogunniyi, stated that the exercise that kicked off on the March 1, 2018 would end on March 13, 2018.

According to him, the devastating effect of measles especially on children, informed the priority given to it among other killer diseases adding that other killer diseases will also be attended to soon.

Read More: How prepared is Nigeria as measles returns with vengeance?

Isamotu, who appealed to health workers and proprietor of private schools in the state to cooperate so that the targeted coverage can be achieved allayed their fear on perceived side effect of the exercise.

The commissioner noted that the prevalence of the disease is declared epidemic when five cases are identified at a location because the disease is highly contagious.

He expressed the preparedness of Osun State government to tackle the menace of measles adding that all that is required to succeed in the exercise have been taken care of.


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