From Uche Uche, Damaturu
Considering what could be described as outrageous number of children infected by measles in the state, the State Primary Health Care Management Board in collaboration with UNICEF office in the state has disclosed that there is going be a campaign on measles vaccination starting from the 30th day of November to the 5th day of December, and from the 7th to 12th day of December, 2017.
UNICEF consultant in the state, Samuel Sesay disclosed during the occasion of media orientation on 2017 measles vaccination campaign, said the exercise will cover the whole local government areas of the state.
He called on traditional, religious leaders, royal fathers to prevail on their wards to avail their children to obtain the vaccination that would be administered at designated areas especially in health facilities in state.
He pointed out that survey conducted within the 26th week of 2017, from January to June, indicated that 13, 893 children are infected and could increase if the campaign is not conducted especially now that the dry season when the infection occurs is here.
The call for stakeholders to prevail on their wards is in connection with the recent outrageous propaganda by some that some medical workers are going about vaccination people, especially school children on the head and abdomen.
He said if sensitization by leaders is not collaborated to persuade parents to discountenance the rumour and take their children for the immunization, the figure of incidence of infection could increase drastically and could affect the economic, social and political status of the state.
He therefore urged parents and guardians to ensure that children between the ages of 9 to 59 months, who has the highest number of incidence of infection from the survey, are taken to fixed vaccination points, especially medical facilities and schools in the state and temporary fixed places selected by communities.
The first phase of the vaccination campaign from 30th of November to the 5th of December would cover 8 local governments of Damaturu, Potiskum, Yunusari,Bursari, Machina, Bade, Karasuwa, Nangere, while the second phase to commence from the 7th and ends on the 12th of December would cover 9 local government areas of Fika, Fune, Geidam, Gujba, Gulani, Jakusko, Nguru, Tarmuwa and Yusufari.
He assured that specially trained medical officers would be administering the vaccines targeted to reach 95% of children and efforts and plans have been concluded to ensure that all children of the designated ages are reached during the campaign.
He warned that measles causes serious illness, lifelong complications that includes deafness, blindness and even death, thus the need to ensure that every child within the ages mention above are have access to and get vaccinated.