TBC Bank awards Nurses with highest immunization coverage
TBILISI, Georgia, 10 July, 2007 - TBC Bank is today awarding nurses who have achieved high immunization coverage in their respective regions with special gifts at a special Thank You Ceremony organized by the TBC Bank in collaboration with the Ministry of Labour, Health and Social Affairs and UNICEF.
The successful nurses were selected from the ongoing behaviour change communication campaign launched in February 2007 which will last until the end of the year. The campaign is carried out by the Ministry of Labour, Health and Social Affairs in collaboration with the Ministry of Education and Science and with the support of UNICEF. TBC Bank of Georgia is one of the supporters of the campaign.
“We are grateful to the TBC Bank for its efforts to support the immunization process in Georgia,” says UNICEF Representative in Georgia, Giovanna Barberis. “This is the first attempt to attract Georgian business companies to promote immunization. I also urge mothers to remember that timely vaccination is important, especially at two, three and four months and the national vaccination calendar should be observed.”
“We think that the children’s immunization programme is extremely useful for raising a healthy generation,” says Vice-President of the TBC Bank, Zezva Tsiskarishvili. “One of the priorities of the TBC Bank is supporting social projects which focus on health protection. This year we have selected children’s immunization. We are glad to collaborate with UNICEF and to make our contribution in such an important sphere.”
“I would also like to congratulate those nurses who have achieved high immunization rates within our campaign. I do hope this will be an incentive for others to work harder and to raise immunization coverage in their regions. They will have opportunity to receive awards from the TBC Bank at the second award giving ceremony to be held later this year,” added Barberis.
During the first round of the campaign, 50 nurses from across the whole country are awarded special plastic cards with a value of GEL 100 (60 $US) from the TBC Bank. These are the nurses who have achieved high immunization coverage in their regions/districts and who have been nominated by the regional representatives of the National centre for the Disease Control and Public Health.
There will be another round of the evaluation of the campaign later in the year which will recognize an additional 50 nurses who will also receive awards from the TBC.
Timely vaccination at two, three and four months is especially important as, first, it reduces the risk of post-vaccination complications and, second, it further strengthens the immunity of children against preventable diseases. Hence, at six and seven months a child is more protected against these infections.
The ongoing communication campaign on immunization includes a mix of interventions, such as administrative mobilization, public relations, interpersonal communication, advertisement through mass-media, school promotion and business partnership for immunization.
Medical workers have been mobilized at central, regional and rayon levels. Family nurses throughout the country have carried out home visits to inform mothers and other caregivers about the benefits of immunization and to advocate for timely vaccination.
The campaign also targeted school children to educate them about the importance of timely vaccination and to have them serve as “personal sellers” of the message in their homes. Lessons were arranged in all schools across the country in April and children received school calendars including information on immunization.
Within the media campaign four advertising segments, each lasting three to four weeks, have been broadcast on radio and television. Talk-shows on immunization have been launched on national and regional TV and radio; video-audio releases have been produced, media feature articles in major newspapers have been released and a 12 minute film on immunization has been aired. Informative booklets, posters, banners with campaign messages have also been placed at the entrance of the polyclinics and different strategic locations.
Procter and Gamble company has also donated 15,000 boxes of disposable Pampers nappies for mothers who take their children for immunization.
UNICEF is on the ground in over 150 countries and territories to help children survive and thrive, from early childhood through adolescence. The world’s largest provider of vaccines for developing countries, UNICEF supports child health and nutrition, good water and sanitation, quality basic education for all boys and girls, and the protection of children from violence, exploitation, and AIDS. UNICEF is funded entirely by the voluntary contributions of individuals, businesses, foundations and governments.
For further information, please contact:
Maya Kurtsikidze, Communications Officer, UNICEF Georgia