World

Nigeria Launches Campaign to Protect More Than 28 Million Children Against Measles and Meningitis

Children in 19 Northern states to be vaccinated in largescale campaign implemented by the Government of Nigeria and WHO with Gavi support

Abuja, 16 November 2019 – In efforts to continue boosting the immunity of children against measles and meningitis, Government, through the National Primary Health Care Development Agency (NPHCDA) and the World Health Organization (WHO), with support from Gavi, the Vaccine Alliance, today kicks off a campaign to reach more than 28 million children with lifesaving vaccines.

They will be vaccinated across 19 Northern states, namely: Bauchi, Benue, Borno, Kano, Katsina, Plateau, Taraba, Niger, Adamawa, Kaduna and Sokoto. Others are Gombe Jigawa, Kebbi, Nasarawa, Yobe, Zamfara, Kwara and the Federal Capital Territory.

Speaking on preparations for the campaign, Dr Joseph Oteri, Director of Disease Control and Immunization, NPHCDA said,

“Measles is a highly contagious respiratory viral disease with increased mortality and morbidity in children under five years, and Nigeria has experienced repeated outbreaks of measles in recent years due to low routine immunization coverage. In addition, Nigeria is within the meningitis belt, where the incidence rate is very high, especially in the North”.

He further stated, “Government is committed to ensuring every eligible child is reached with these lifesaving vaccines. We will go to markets, schools, churches, mosques and everywhere we can get good catchment to reach our target population. No child deserves to die from any vaccine preventable disease.”