The Government of Gabon is set to intensify the vaccination of children less than one month-old against COVID-19 and other infections.
The operation which falls under the Enlarged Programme of Vaccination (EPV) would also serve as a vaccination catch-up for children who have not been vaccinated or have been insufficiently vaccinated since Jan. 2021.
The exercise will begin next month and be extended to all the 52 sanitary divisions of Gabon.
Officials of the Ministry of Health, its development partners, and heads of the vaccination structures Wednesday, Sept. 8, held a meeting to define the new orientations for the reinforcement of the activities of the Enlarged Programme of Vaccination in view of the next activities of the intensified vaccination campaign for children from zero to eleven months old.
In effect, faced with the under-reporting of children vaccination and in view of the negative impact of the COVID-19, the government has seen the need for an investigation on the national vaccination coverage and the implication in the vaccination process of the enlarged vaccination programme.
The government has also seen the need for the availability of the data and other relative information to the relevant health services.
This strategy aims at ameliorating the quality of vaccination data at all levels of the health pyramid and also reinforce the establishments involved in the enlarged vaccination programme so as to attain a vaccination coverage of at least 95 per cent at the national level.
According to Guy Patrick Obiang Ndong, the country’s Minister of Health, the wellbeing of the children being a constant preoccupation of the president of the republic, the various experts must ensure the complete and integral participation in the activities in favour of children, notably through the distribution of treated mosquito nets for the fight against malaria, the distribution of deworming drugs as well as vaccination against measles, diphtheria, tetanus etc.
The enlarged programme of vaccination is aimed at reinforcing the vaccination system in order to protect the populations against epidemics. For the campaign to succeed, the minister has called for the active participation of pediatricians and midwives.
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