SUNDAY, SEPTEMBER 25, 2016

Yemen's polio vaccination campaign continues

National polio vaccination campaign ends in Yemen | Courtesy of myvmc.org

Yemen's Ministry of Public Health, the World Health Organization (WHO), and UNICEF recently ended the second phase of the national polio vaccination campaign.

The target of the campaign was 4.5 million children who were less than 5 years old and who lived in 17 different governorates. Internally displaced people, marginalized communities, Bedouins, and refugees were considered high-risk groups and were also targeted in the campaign.

The four-day campaign reached approximately 92 percent of the targeted children. Approximately 40,000 health care workers participated in both fixed and mobile teams. Officials in local councils as well as imams in mosques mobilized their support to help with intensive health education and an advocacy program.

"Despite huge security challenges, WHO is committed to supporting polio immunization campaigns and all activities of the expanded program on immunization to maintain the polio-free status of Yemen," Ahmed Shadoul, WHO's representative in Yemen, said. “We will continue to make every endeavor to reach the global goal of eradicating polio. This campaign is a step towards this long-term and crucial goal.”

WHO provided $3.3 million for the operational costs of the campaign, including supervision, micro-planning and incentives for health care workers.

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