Nurse clears air over vaccination

National

FEARS that the seventh round of the polio vaccinations as well as that for measles and rubella vaccination may “overdose” children have been allayed by a nursing officer.
Nurse Tungi Punia with Susu Mamas PNG said the numerous rounds of polio vaccination administered to children were crucial to ensure they were protected from polio and associated illnesses.
Punia, who is part of the Kama urban clinic team to immunise children in Goroka, Eastern Highlands, clarified this after some parents in the township raised concern about their children being “overdosed” with polio vaccinations.
“We are in the seventh round of giving polio vaccinations now and as people may have noticed, this time we are also giving an injection to children as well,” he said.
“The injection is for measles and rubella while the oral suspension is for polio.
“Parents must not confuse the medication.
“The injection was included because of suspected measles and rubella cases and also as a preventative measure.”
Punia urged parents to bring their children aged from six months to five years to their nearest health centre to be vaccinated.
“My team, located at the Goroka main market, have been vaccinating about 200 plus children per day since we started last week,” he said.
“The service is free and all children who are below the age of five should be vaccinated.”
He said one of the biggest challenges associated with the polio campaign, in his view, was to convince parents to get their children to receive all rounds of the medicine.
Punia reiterated that polio was a crippling and potentially deadly disease and vaccination was the only way to prevent it.

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