Measles Campaign: Defaulting States Wont Partake Subsequently, FG Warns

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BY DOYIN OJOSIPE, Abuja –

States that do not pay counterpart funds before September 15th 2017, will be stepped down in the next measles campaign, the Federal Government has Said.

The Executive Secretary, National Primary Health  Care Development Agency(NPHCDA), Dr Faisal Shuaib gave the warning while briefing newsman in Abuja,  yesterday.

Dr Shuaib said contrary to agreement made at the Nigerian Governor’s Forum, only four states have fully released their counterpart funds for Measles vaccination campaign.

“NPHCDA has held a meeting with the Nigeria Governor’s Forum for mobilisation of states counterpart funds fund the campaign, Kebbi, Borno, Nasarawa and Imo have fully released state counterpart funding into a dedicated account, Kano has only partially.

“we cannot continue to have poor quality campaign in this country that leaves our children susceptible to measles infections and deaths,” Shuaib said.

The spread of Measles infection to more states and local governments has necessitated a nationwide vaccination campaign, the NPHCDA boss disclosed.

Measles has been one of the leading causes of children under five deaths,  despite the availability of safe and effective vaccines through routine immunisation system.

Addressing Journalists, Shuaib disclosed that the agency findings revealed that outbreaks has increased from 166 to 183 cases with spread from 140 local government areas to 158 local government areas between 2015 and 2016 respectively.

“vaccination status among confirmed cases indicates that the majority of cases have never been vaccinated with measles vaccines, consistent with inadequate  levels of immunisation coverage,” he said.

He further noted that while measles cases have been on the steady rise in the North since 2014, there has been a sharp decline in the Southern States.

He however said the result is still below global target.

The campaign is expected to commence in October 26 to 31 2017, starting with the North west, while North east will follow as from 30 November to 5th December 2017.

“the North central states will implement from February 1st to 6th 2018 while all Southern States will implement from 8th to 13th of March 2018,” he added.