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General News of Saturday, 17 October 2020

Source: The Nation

FG resumes vaccination against yellow fever

The Federal Government is set to resume vaccination of at least 30 million Nigerians across seven states of the federation, against the Yellow Fever (YF) disease following challenges from the COVID-19 pandemic.

With support from the World Health Organisation (WHO), CDC, Gavi, the Vaccine Alliance, the vaccination will be relaunched in Bauchi, Benue, Borno, Delta, Osun, Ondo, and Oyo.

The pending 2019 phase 3 YF campaign will be completed in Anambra.

This will be followed by further YF vaccination efforts between 2021-2022, which will target more than 95 million persons as part of the push to eliminate yellow fever epidemics.

The 10-day YF campaign in Anambra is scheduled to kick off on October 16 while the phase four states are scheduled to start on November 20, 2020.

These campaigns are to be in accordance with the WHO guidelines for the implementation of mass campaigns in the context of the COVID-19 pandemic with the use of PPEs and infection prevention control strategies as recommended.

Executive Director, National Primary Health Care Development Agency (NPHCDA), Dr. Faisal Shuaib said: “While COVID-19 remains a pressing priority, we are pleased to be able to safely relaunch life-protecting vaccination campaigns against yellow fever this week.

“Almost 30 million Nigerians will be protected for life from these campaigns in the coming months – a remarkable achievement by our health care workers and communities.

“We encourage all eligible persons in the state to come forward and get vaccinated. Yellow fever outbreaks have re-emerged as serious public health concerns since September 2017. The upcoming campaigns will help stop outbreaks and save lives.”

“The Yellow fever vaccine confers lifelong protection and is the most effective tool to prevent outbreaks of this potentially deadly disease.

“Gavi has been a long-time partner in this effort, and we are committed to continuing to support the Government of Nigeria and partners in their efforts to reach the millions, including children, who are at risk,” Thabani Maphosa, Managing Director for Country Programmes at Gavi said.

The WHO Representative to Nigeria, Dr. Kazadi Mulombo, said: “Through decisive and agile work by the WHO EPI and Health Emergency programmes, WHO has helped source and provide 265,000 face masks that will support the safe implementation of life-saving yellow fever vaccination activities in the COVID-19 context in Anambra state.

“The technical support provided by WHO to National and State levels will ensure a high-quality campaign including planning, training of health care workers, supervision of the campaign, and high vaccination coverage. WHO and partners are committed to ensuring that every person at risk of yellow fever is protected.”

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