The Lagos State Primary Health Care Board (LSPHCB) with the support of development partners will be conducting a statewide immunisation campaign against Rotavirus from Friday, 25th November to Wednesday, 30th November at primary healthcare centres and designated outreaches across the state.
This was stated at a forum recently held by the Board to sensitise stakeholders on the introduction of rotavirus vaccine into its routine immunisation programme, in recognition of the magnitude of rotavirus related diarrhoea diseases.
In her address, the Director, Health Education and Health Promotion Services, LSPHCB, Mrs Clara Owojuyigbe said that rotavirus diseases is a contagious virus that causes diarrhoea diseases in children and spread easily among infants and young children hand to mouth after touching an object that has a small amount of the infected stool on it.
Represented by an Assistant Director at the Board, Mrs Oluwatoyin Finnih, the Director further said that the introduction of rotavirus vaccination is aimed at averting over 50,000 children’s death from the disease annually and would be given orally to all infants at the age of six weeks, 10 weeks and 14 weeks old, along with other vaccines under its routine immunisation programme. These programmes are available at the primary healthcare centres in all the local government areas and local council development areas as well as private hospitals in the state.
“In recognition of stakeholders’ role in humanitarian services and creation of enabling environment for the promotion of health programmes, this sensitisation forum is to update you on the introduction of rotavirus vaccination programme which will be integrated into the routine immunisation vaccines for children. We want to solicit your support in community mobilisation and sensitisation of the general public to create more awareness”, she said.
Principal Medical Officer representing National Primary Health Care Development Agency, Dr Bello Bakunawa said that the various stakeholders at the sensitisation meeting are important to the initiative since they represent various communities in Lagos State that need to be carried along in the rotavirus vaccination programme as the state is leading in piloting the rotavirus vaccine.
Lagos, he noted, has the human resource on health-related programmes as various information passed by various health practitioners on the vaccine are critical in achieving the best in the areas of rotavirus vaccination, just as he solicited the cooperation of all stakeholders to support the state government when the programme is flagged off in Lagos.
The state Immunisation Coordinator attached to LSPHCB, Dr Olubunmi Akinlade said that rotavirus is the main cause of diarrhoea in children under five years.
According to him, the rotavirus vaccine is going to be available from the 5th November in all public and private health facilities, stressing, however, that it would be free of charge for the targeted children who are six weeks, 10 weeks and 14 weeks old in all state government public healthcare facilities across the state.