21 May 2019

Mozambique: Thousand of Minors Vaccinated Against Killer Diseases

Maputo — GLOBAL authorities have vaccinated hundreds of thousands of children affected by successive cyclones in Mozambique.

The vaccination campaigns are to curb outbreaks of cholera, measles and polio in the recently food hit provinces of Mozambique.

More than 700 000 children have been reached after the United Nations Children's Fund (UNICEF) and partners that include the World Health Organisation (WHO), supported the government-led Health Week in Mozambique's 21 most-affected districts of Inhambane, Manica Sofala and Zambézia provinces.

The Health Week is a significant step in re-establishing basic health services, especially for children and pregnant women affected by Cyclones Idai and Kenneth floods in March and April respectively.

"Children under-five and pregnant women are facing dangerous health and nutrition risks following the devastating back-to-back cyclones in Mozambique," said Michel Le Pechoux, UNICEF deputy representative in the country.

James McQuen Patterson, UNICEF Health Chief, said preventing the spread of cholera and acute watery diarrhoea was critical to saving children's lives in the aftermath of the cyclones.

"Children are especially vulnerable to diarrheal diseases. Working with experts in water and sanitation, communication and health, we are all racing against time to halt the spread of cholera," Patterson said.

Cholera and other infectious diseases continue to be a major threat to children and families following the cyclones.

Idai was one of the worst tropical cyclones on record to affect Africa and the Southern Hemisphere.

The storm caused extensive damage in Malawi, Mozambique and Zimbabwe, leaving more than 1 000 people dead, thousands more missing with more than 500, 000 displaced.

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