The Kaduna State Government says its target is to immunise one million children under the age of five years against measles.
Deputy Director of the Kaduna Primary Health Care Development Agency (KDPHCDA), Malam Hamza Ikara, said this during a media sensitisation meeting on Tuesday in Kaduna. Ikara said the exercise, would be conducted in two phases across the state beginning from October 26.
“We are starting our measles immunisation campaigns in the state and it would be conducted in two phases. “The first phase is starting October 26-31 with 13 local government areas which include Kaduna South, Kaduna North, Ikara, Giwa, Igabi, Chikun, Kubau, Makarfi, Kudan, Birin Gwari, Sabogari, Zaria,” he said.
According to him, the second phase would come up from November 2-7 in 10 local government areas. He explained that the immunisation exercise would take place in all the 1,168 primary health facilities in the state, adding that adequate arrangements had been made by the government and its partners to achieve success.
“The state government has approved the sum of N38 million for the measles campaign as its counterpart fund and other development partners are also assisting with training of workers and supervisors.
“We have concluded arrangements to ensure that a mother does not trek more than one kilometer to get her child immunised. We want to achieve 95 to 100 per cent compliance to ensure total eradication of measles; this is because in the last exercise conducted in the state we achieved only 30 per cent coverage,” Ikara said.
The official further said that apart from the health facilities, the government would also use schools, churches, mosques, and residences of traditional rulers to administer the vaccines for the six days the exercise would last
He added that other interventions would be provided at health camps especially in high risk areas. Malam Ikara called on parents and caregivers to ensure that their children and wards get the measles vaccine.
He said: “Ensure you take your children between ages nine months to five years to be vaccinated against measles in all government facilities and vaccination posts nearest to you. The vaccination is free, safe and effective.
He also solicited the support of media professional for increased awareness on the exercise to ensure massive turn out for the vaccination.
The official explained that the exercise would prevent the beneficiaries from contracting the disease that easily affect children.