The Lagos State Government has embarked on House to House polio Immunisation for all children aged zero to five years, irrespective of the previous immunisation status.
The Permanent Secretary of the primary health care board, Dr. Tayo Lawal, said this in Lagos during a town hall meeting with Health correspondents on the Second Round of 2019 Polio Vaccination Campaign.
Lawal said the move was in response to the discovery of environmental Polio Virus strains in three canals of the State, and to help prevent the virus from spreading.
The exercise will commence on June15 and run for four days.
need for compliance
He urged the media to help educate the public on the importance of the vaccine appealing to parents, schools, religious, traditional, market and community leaders including gated estates to give maximum compliance.
’’Immunization is the cheapest means of promoting health and preventing diseases among the children. Every child must be vaccinated. It is the work of the media to create the needed awareness to enable people show compliance. The state is ready to go all out in ensuring that polio is eradicated. Nigeria is the only country left in Africa yet to be certified polio free saying. Any child within the stipulated age that is not vaccinated will only endanger him or herself and the community at large. It is very important to have hundred percent compliance,’’ he said.
The World Health Organization representative, Fiona Branka said Nigeria has made a remarkable progress in the fight against polio.
According to her, the country is now thirty two months without a wild polio virus.
Mrs. Branka said that the viruses’ detected in three canals in Lagos state was a different strain of outbreak that needs to be interrupted as quickly as possible.
The need for urgent vaccination
She explained that high coverage of vaccine was needed to break the transmission and build population immunity against the virus saying that seven viruses have been isolated in Lagos this year.
She urged the media to help in creating awareness to the general public on the need for all children under five years regardless of their previous vaccination status to receive this vaccine.
’’The vaccine that will be provided is not the routine vaccine that is given through the health facilities or outreach services. The aim of the vaccination is to administer two drops of polio vaccine to all children who are below five years across twenty local governments of the state using a house to house approach. This can only be achieved if everyone works collectively to bring out children to get two drops of polio vaccine over the next four days. The vaccine is safe, effective and free,” she added.