Maputo — More than 700,000 children under the age of five will be vaccinated against polio in the Mozambican provinces of Zambezia, Nampula, and Niassa after three cases of the disease were detected in Zambezia.
According to a press release from the Ministry of Health, the door to door vaccination campaign will take place between 30 January and 4 February after the cases of polio were confirmed in Sinai in Molumbo district.
The campaign will cover seven districts in Zambezia province: Molumbo, Gurue, Ile, Namarroi, Lugela, Milange and Alto-Molocue. In addition, vaccinations will be given in the districts of Cuamba and Mecanhelas in Niassa province and Malema in Nampula province.
The Ministry of Health has called on all parents, carers, and stakeholders to support community mobilisation so that all the young children in the area can benefit from the vaccine.
The campaign forms part of the Global Polio Eradication & Endgame Strategic Plan for 2013-2018, which seeks to detect and completely interrupt all poliovirus transmission.
Mozambique was declared free of polio in 2016. However, there are still a few isolated cases where children who have missed the vaccine have caught the virus. It is mainly spread through faecal-oral infection and can spread quickly in communities with poor sanitation.