Kaduna State Primary Health Care Agency to Commence Measles Vaccination
……….State government releases 38 million as counterpart funding
Zainab Tanimu —Kaduna
The Kaduna state primary Health Care Agency says it will soon commence measles vaccination across the state. The first phase of the exercise is to commence from 26th – 31st October and the 2nd phase from 2nd- 7th November, 2017.
The agency’s Executive Secretary Dr. Hadiza Sabuwa Balarabe disclosed this while sensitizing Media team on the forthcoming measles campaign exercise in the state.
Dr. Hadiza who spoke through the Deputy Director of the Agency Alhaji Hamza Ikara said that the first Phase of the exercise would cover 13 local government areas while the second phase would cover 10 local government areas. It is going to last for 6days.
Lamenting, Dr. Hadiza said in spite of the huge amount of money that has been spent in the
eradication of the disease, some areas are still having the problem. She disclosed that the sum of 38 million naira has been released by the state government for the exercise which the agency has already received.
” Measles is one of the common childhood killer diseases in the country. We usually conduct this immunization after every two years. We have conducted in October 2013, October 2015 and now we are conducting another round this 2017. We lost a lot of children as a result of measles infection which is not supposed to especially in Kaduna state. Kaduna state government is spending a lot of money in order to strengthen the routine immunization services across the 23 LGAs of the state where all our 1,168 health facilities are running the routine immunization services. The state government is pushing vaccines to strengthen the routine immunization services. Despite these efforts by the government, still we are having reported cases of measles in some local government areas of the state.”
She said that 1,938 team are to conduct the exercise across the 23 local government areas of the state, adding that all the hard reach communities will be covered during the exercise.
“We have 1,938 approved teams that we are going to work with across the 23LGAs of the state. Despite the number of this team, we still created another 400 team in case there are areas that the team could not reach despite the number of days.”
Dr. Hadiza solicited for the supports of the media in sensitizing the general public especially mothers on the need to avail their children for the immunization exercise.
UNICEF on its part has expressed commitments in making the routine immunization a success. Speaking through its consultants Mr. Samuel Anumudu and Charles Agbonifo, “all is set to achieving the set target of reaching 95% coverage we intend to achieve in the measles campaign exercise”.
Samuel stressed on the need for the media to make it feasible as they are the voice of the people.
“You are the voice that we need to create awareness. This is the time for you to support us in strengthening the measles campaign that we are about commencing. Routine Immunization has now been declared as an emergency in Nigeria. We need to strengthen Routine Immunization and create measles awareness. We really need you to take ownership by coming out in full swing to support us so that we can achieve the 95% coverage that we intend to achieve in this measles campaign exercise.”
In his presentation, Mr. Charle Agbonifo said the immunization would be provided for six days and that the target as partners is to ensure that 95% of the children get immunized. Concrete arrangement he said has been put in place to ease the immunization exercise as mothers need not to go far to access services.
“It has been arranged in such a way that no care giver should trek more than 1kilometer before they get their children immunized. Measles ranks 3rd in frequency amongst the diseases of epidemic potentials in the world and man are the only reservoir for measles virus. The measles virus is spread through air droplets and direct contact with nasal or throat cushion of infected persons. The transmission is favored in densely populated areas. If not tackled properly, within a short time, we can have an epidemic on our hands. So we need to ensure that our care givers, our families, our communities, our society all come out and ensure that they are immunized. This is why we are stressing that as much as possible, routine immunization is still the way. “The targeted children that should take the vaccination are those within the ages of 9months to 5years. It is free. No fee is charged. Partners and the state government have paid to ensure that it is free.
“We need the media to help us drive the process. To help us address the issue of myths and misconceptions and that of rumor which hold people back from getting immunization thereby disrupting the process.”
Local Government Areas under Phase One of the Immunization Campaign ( 26th -31st October) are, Kaduna North, Kaduna South, Igabi, Chukwu, Zaria, Sabon-gari, Giwa, Soba, Kubau, Ikara, Makarfi, Kudan and Birnin Gwari.
Local Government Under Phase Two of the Immunization Campaign ( 2nd -7th November) are, Jama’a, Sanga, Kaura, Jaba, Kagarku, Kachia, Kwaru, Lere, Kajuru, and Zango Kataf LG.