Official: Polio vaccination exercise progressing slowly


THE fourth round of the polio vaccination campaign in Morobe is progressing slowly, an official says.
Deputy programme adviser for health Jack Aita told The National on Monday that just like in other provinces, the slow coverage has led to a five days extension.
The scheduled vaccination exercise was November 5-18.
However, Aita said the extension itself was a concern.
“It’s too much too because we have more expenses now,” he said.
“We selected those areas with the biggest populations and we gave more time.
“This is especially in districts that did not reach the target coverage.
“Those districts with a big population are Bulolo, Kabwum and Menyamya.”
“The health facilities in those districts are in Watut, Wau,
Mumeng, Tekadu, Derim, Indagen, Yalumet, Aseki and Kwaplalim.”
Aita said there are some health facilities that received their vaccines late such as in Garaina, which was due to a missed flight.
“The communication and network coverage has also been a major setback in terms of reporting as there are some teams; we really do not know what they are doing.”
Aita said the fourth round is still an emergency exercise and parents should still bring their children for vaccinations, instead of ignoring the vaccination teams.
“People think that three rounds is enough but that is not the case,” he said.
“The fourth round is also important.
“There are ongoing awareness campaigns in the province.”
Aita said as of Monday, the total coverage of the province is 253, 707 which is 87 per cent.
The third round covered more than 300,000 children under 15 with more than 100 per cent coverage.

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