The Anambra State commissioner for health, Dr Joe Akabuike has stated that his ministry is targeting about 2.7million women and children for immunization against tetanus and wild polio.
Akabuike said that he is confident that all persons within the range for the immunization would be reached, reiterating that Anambra State has continued to win the Nigerian Governors’ Forum award for wide reach in immunization exercise, and that this could be attributed to the support of the state governor, Chief Willie Obiano.
The commissioner said that the ministry would have no problem accessing all parts of the state, including the riverine areas as the governor has procured 17 ambulances and six flying boats to help reach people in areas that can only be accessed through water.
“We are using this opportunity to tell you that the second phase of National Immunization Plus Days will commence on 25th April and run through to 28th. Our specific objective is to administer two drops of potent oral polio vaccine and to scale up delivery of the routine immunization antigens as well as other child survival interventions.
“Our overall goal is to sustain the interruption of wild polio virus among children between 0 to 59 months in Anambra State.” Akabuike said.
He listed some of the vaccines to be administered and those eligible for the immunization to include; Oral Polio Vaccine(OPV) for children between 0 to 59 months, BCG for children under one year, HBV 0 dose within 24 hours of birth and pentavalent vaccine for children under one year.
Others are; Pnemococcal Conjugate Vaccine(PCV) for one year olds, Measles vaccine for nine months olds, yellow fever vaccine also for nine month-olds and tetanus toxoid for pregnant women and for women of child bearing age.
He also stated that the population targeted are; 1.05million children between 0-59 months, 211,993 children of less than one year, 264,991 pregnant women and 1.165million women within child bearing age.
Akabuike advised mothers and care givers to avail themselves of the opportunity to make sure that their children are vaccinated, insisting that all the drugs are free and safe; without any side effects.