The Lagos State Government, in collaboration with the United Nations Children’s Fund (UNICEF) has commenced the Second round of 2019 Polio Vaccination Campaign which was preceded by a sensitisation training for health reporters, journalists, and correspondents ahead of the statewide polio vaccine administration.
Speaking at the event, the Permanent Secretary, Primary Health Care Board, Dr. Tayo Lawal pointed out that tremendous progress has been made in the drive to eradicate polio and drastically reduce the incidence of vaccine-preventable diseases.
Lawal said that the objectives of the campaign are aimed at halting the spread of polio virus in Lagos State, increase coverage of immunised children against vaccine-preventable diseases, reduce the number of unimmunised children as well as improve the immunity of the environment against the Wild Polio Virus.
He noted that currently, Nigeria has been identified as one of the endemic cases for Polio, hence, the need to sensitise the public on the need to imunise every child in order to prevent children disability or death.
“To ensure the success of the second leg of this year’s campaign which is being conducted by the National Primary Health Care Development Agency (NPHCDA), Lagos State Ministry of Health (LSMoH), and Lagos State Primary Health Care Board (LSPHCB) with support from health development partners such as WHO, UNICEF, CDC-AFENET and Rotary International, several training workshops had been organised to strengthen the capacity of health workers/vaccinators and social mobilisers across the State, Local Government and Ward levels”, the Permanent Secretary stated.
He added that the State Government has equally embarked on public, media sensitisation and awareness campaigns through town hall meetings; community dialogues; mosque/church announcements; sensitisation campaigns in schools; and advocacy meetings with LGA Executives and key traditional and religious leaders as well as volunteers from development partners such as UNICEF, Rotary Club International to mention a few.
According to Dr. Lawal, “the polio vaccination campaign would involve house-to-house, transit and fixed post teams. Children at homes, markets, churches, mosques, major car parks and social event venues would be specifically targeted”.
“The house-to-house and transit components of these teams comprising of 7381 trained personnel will administer only OPV to children aged 0–59 months irrespective of their immunisation status. They will also encourage the eligible children in the houses to visit the immunisation posts located within all our primary health care centres and general hospitals for the other antigens. The operations will be between the hours of 8 a.m. and 4 p.m. daily”, Dr. Lawal said.
The Permanent Secretary, Ministry of Health, Dr. Titilayo Gonclaves also used the opportunity to call on Lagosians to key into the Lagos State Health Scheme (LSHS) which is a mandatory package for every member of the family including children.