About 6.4 million children under five years in Ghana have been immunised against polio during the just-ended immunisation exercise.
The Programme Manager of the Expanded Programme on Immunisation (EPI), Dr Kwame Amponsa-Achiano, who disclosed this in an interview has described the exercise as a huge success.
He explained that the EPI targeted approximately 6.3 million children to be immunised in the exercise which was done from September 1 to 4 and would continue next month from October 6 to 9.
Dr Amponsa-Achiano, however, said because of the recent rains, children in some areas in Bono East, Oti, and other regions which have island communities had not been immunized because the team could not visit those places.
He indicated that the team would go to the island communities in two weeks when the waters had receded to immunise the children there.
Dr Amponsa-Achiano explained that the immunisation exercise was in response to an outbreak of the non-wild type of the virus known as circulating Vaccine Derived Polio Virus Type two (cVDPV2), hence the need for every child to receive at least two doses in about four weeks’ interval.
He said children who were not vaccinated in the first round of the immunisation campaign could still receive the second dose during the second round of the campaign which comes off from October 6 to 9, although that was not enough to ensure protection.
He urged caregivers, particularly parents, to ensure that they made their children available for the second round of the campaign.
“You need the two rounds. If you missed the first round of immunisation, you cannot go to a health facility to take it because this vaccine is different. It is called the Novel Oral Polio Vaccine Type two (nOPV2) and is not available in routine clinics.
“If children missed the first exercise, they should take advantage of the second one and get immunised.
It will not be enough to take one dose but it is better than nothing,” he added.
The Ghana Health Service (GHS) from September 1 to 4 began immunising children below five years across the country against polio. The exercise is in two rounds, the first round started on September 1 to 4 and the second round is scheduled for October 6 to 9.
The exercise is aimed at stopping the spread of the polio virus across the country.
Dubbed “Kick polio out of Ghana: vaccinate your child now”, it is in response to recent tests by the GHS that confirmed non-wild polio in the environment, and two cases of this type of polio in children below five years, with both children becoming paralysed.
|Disclaimer: Opinions expressed here are those of the writers and do not reflect those of Peacefmonline.com. Peacefmonline.com accepts no responsibility legal or otherwise for their accuracy of content. Please report any inappropriate content to us, and we will evaluate it as a matter of priority.|