UNICEF joins forces with WHO for Syrian immunization campaign

The United Nations Children's Fund announced on Friday that it has joined forces with the World Health Organization and other humanitarian agencies to carry out a large scale immunization campaign in Syria.

It is estimated that approximately 500,000 children in Syria have not received routine vaccinations against polio since the start of the nation's crisis. Prior to the start of the Syrian conflict in March 2011, immunization coverage in the nation was at approximately 95 percent.

The immunization campaign was launched by the Syrian Ministry of Health on October 24 to vaccinate approximately 2.4 million children against polio, rubella, measles and mumps. The World Health Organization and UNICEF have joined the Ministry of Health's immunization efforts.

UNICEF has taken initiative to increase awareness about the immunization campaign and the importance of immunizations throughout Syria. The organization has also mobilized vaccines throughout the nation to ensure immunization coverage in areas in-need.

This campaign is one of many set to take place in Syria and neighboring countries through the end of the year.

UNICEF runs programs in 190 countries and territories for children from infancy and adolescence. UNICEF is the largest provider of vaccines to developing countries in the world and focuses on providing clean water and sanitation, basic health services, nutrition and education to children worldwide.