By Desmond Ogudu
The Edo State Governor, Mr. Godwin Obaseki, has flagged off Meningococcal vaccination in Edo State, assuring residents in the State of adequate health care in the remodelled Primary Healthcare Centers across the State.
The Governor said this at the official flag-off of the ceremony of Edo State’s introduction of Meningococcal A Conjugate vaccine (MEN A) into its routine immunisation, held at Ring Road, in Benin City, the Edo State capital.
The Governor, who was represented by the Permanent Secretary, Edo State Ministry of Health, Dr. Osamwonyi Irowa, said that the vaccination was introduced by the National Primary Health Care Development Agency (NPHCDA) as a single dose injection for children at nine months, at the same time as measles and yellow fever vaccines.
Dr. Irowa listed the signs and symptoms of the disease to include fever, sudden onset of severe feeling of vomiting, irritability, neck stiffness, convulsion and loss of consciousness. He said although meningitis can be treated, its complications include deafness, paralysis, seizures, mental retardation, arthritis and death.
He commended the efforts of all stakeholders, the NPHCDA, the World Health Organisation (WHO), the United Nations Children’s Fund (UNICEF), among others, for their continued collaboration with the State Government on its health programmes.
Executive Secretary, Edo State Primary Health Care Development Agency (EDSPHCDA), Dr. Mbarie Imuwahen, commended the Governor for his unrelenting support to the health sector, including immunisation campaigns. She further reiterated that his administration has helped the State achieve and sustain the progress made so far in putting an end to diseases that can be prevented by a vaccine.
Dr. Mbarie appealed to the caregivers and parents to accept the programme by ensuring that all children in the target group, aged 9-15 months old, are immunised, noting, “This is because incomplete childhood immunisation will predispose our communities, state and country to outbreaks of vaccine-preventable diseases”.
According to her, “Vaccinators have been instructed to administer MEN A vaccine to children (between 9-15months) in all health facilities, temporarily fixed posts and during outreaches in Edo State”.