National Immunisation Campaign kicks off in Mozambique
Maputo, 5 August 2005 - Mozambique’s Deputy Health Minister Aida Libombo on 1 August kicked off a national immunisation campaign against measles and polio aimed at reaching almost 9 million children. She vaccinated the first child at the administrative post Muatala in Nampula Province. “This is only the beginning of a challenging process. We must keep the commitment for the next rounds of the campaign to make sure that no child is left out”, UNICEF Representative Leila Pakkala said on behalf of the United Nations in Mozambique.
The first phase of the campaign from 1-8 August covers the northern provinces of Nampula, Cabo Delgado and Niassa. As part of the kick off-ceremony, Deputy Health Minister Aida Libombo, UNICEF Representative Leila Pakkala, and the Governor of Nampula Province, Filipe Paúnde visited a local primary school in Nampula where a large number of children were vaccinated.
“Despite the government efforts to ensure a high immunisation level, so far only 7 out of 10 children are vaccinated, leaving the remaining 3 vulnerable to measles”, Ms. Libombo said. “The Mozambican Government decided to launch this National Vaccination Campaign to contribute to the decrease of child mortality and to improve children’s health conditions”, she said
The second phase of the campaign from 15 to 20 August will cover the central provinces of Zambézia, Tete, Manica and Sofala. The last round from 5 to 10 September will reach out to the southern provinces of Inhambane, Gaza, Maputo as well as Maputo city.
Children between 9 months and 14 years are vaccinated against measles; children under 5 years of age are vaccinated against polio and children aged 6 to 59 months receive a Vitamin A supplementation.
The International Measles Partnership which includes UNICEF, The World Health Organization (WHO), The American Red Cross, the US Centre for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC), the Canadian International Development Agency (CIDA) and the UN Foundation is supporting the Mozambican Ministry of Health in implementing the Vaccination Campaign.