Sequel to the recent polio outbreak in three Local Governments Areas in Borno State, the Federal government said it has released the sum of 9.8 billion naira this year for polio eradication from the country.
The Acting Executive Director of National Primary Health Care Development Agency, NPHCDA, Dr. Emmanuel Odu disclosed this yesterday in Abuja at a press conference on update of government’s response activities on polio outbreak in the country.
Odu said, ‘’ the present government heightened its commitment by budgeting and releasing N9.8 billion for polio eradication and immunization this year.’’
He said that following the three new cases outbreak of the Wild Polio Virus, WPV, which occurred in Jere, Gwoza and Monguno Local Government Areas of Borno State, government has heightened its commitment towards eradicating the polio virus from the country through its response activities in partnership with stakeholders.
Speaking on government’s response activities since the outbreak of polio in the first outbreak response on immunization rounds, Odu disclosed 5.9 million eligible children were vaccinated in five LGAs.
The second outbreak response which was implemented in 18 states including the Federal Capital Territory; FCT targeted 31.54 million eligible children, ‘’using 38.4 million doses of Polio Vaccine deployed to the states.’’
‘’In the course of this round which was implemented on 17th-20th September 2016, a total of 28,757,161 children under the age of five years were vaccinated’’, he said.
He disclosed that for effective response immunization, there was need to use the inactivated Polio Vaccine, IPV.
He said, ‘’ 1.9 million doses of Inactivated Polio Vaccine, IPV, was mobilized from available in-country sources and deployed for use in Borno State. This is more effective compared with the Oral Polio Vaccine, OPV, and in view of the urgent need to achieve optimum levels of population immunity.’’
While fielding questions from journalists, Odu said that it takes five contacts in 14 weeks for a child to be fully immunized against child killer diseases, adding that very soon polio would be eradicated from Nigeria.
The NPHCDA boss further said the the 3rd, 4th and 5th outbreak immunization response which commences from October through to November 2016 will be implemented in 18 states plus 11 high risks states including Taraba, Adamawa, Gombe, Plateau, Nasarawa, Benue States and FCT.
In a bid to effect results, the new NPHCDA ED said that other strategies for improving access of the polio outbreak response campaigns especially in crisis zones include partnership with the Armed Forces which provides security for vaccinators and other field workers, engagement of traditional leaders for mobilization and advocacy, engagement of humanitarian service providers, availability of potent vaccines, adequate and effective cold chain system and establishment of emergency operations centres at Borno, Kano, Yobe, Bauchi, Katsina, and Kaduna States.

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