Zimbabwe resumes polio vaccination drive


Polio mobilisation in Zimbabwe

from MARCUS MUSHONGA in Harare, Zimbabwe
Zimbabwe Bureau
HARARE, (CAJ News) – ZIMBABWE is to vaccinate against polio, more than 2,5 million children under five years.

This is part of a response to outbreaks reported in Malawi and Mozambique recently.

The Ministry of Health and Child Care (MoHCC) and partners have deployed teams to conduct house-to-house and door-to-door polio mobilisation and vaccination.

This is for the four campaign days effective Thursday (today).

The deployment is in addition to all the health facilities in the country, which will also be administering the polio vaccine throughout the period.

“Further, the ministry has planned for special mobile teams to cover all hard-to-reach areas in the country and reach out to all targeted children,” Dr John Mangwiro, deputy health minister stated.

MoHCC has already distributed over 6 million vaccine doses across all 63 districts of the country, with the support of the Global Polio Eradication Initiative (GPEI).

The second round of vaccination is planned for December.

Malawi, Mozambique, Tanzania and Zambia are also currently carrying out coordinated vaccination campaigns, with more than 40 million doses administered during the first three rounds of the exercise.

This follows the detection of the first case of wild poliovirus in Malawi in 30 years.

“While Zimbabwe remains polio free, we are aware of the risk we face, due to the recent polio outbreak in neighboring countries of Malawi and Mozambique,” said Dr Tajudeen Oyewale, United Nations Children’s Fund representative in Zimbabwe.

Polio is a disabling and life-threatening disease, mostly affecting children.

– CAJ News


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