The Malawi government through the Ministry of Health will this month conduct a week-long catch-up polio vaccination campaign targeting over 1.8 million children below the age of five.
Confirming the development was the ministry’s public relations officer Adrian Chikumbe who was speaking at the end of a media training on the campaign in Salima over the weekend where he said the exercise is expected to be held from 12th to 16th July, 2021 countrywide.
Chikumbe said the ministry is targeting the under-five Children who missed the vaccine in a similar exercise between January 2016 and December 2018 due to vaccine stock out.
He added that though the country has for decades not registered a polio case, it is important to get the children vaccinated claiming polio has no cure and it is better to protect children by getting them polio vaccine.
“From 12th to 16th July, 2021, we are rolling out a week long polio vaccine catch-up campaign where over 1.8 million children that missed the jab will get it from all the under-five clinics where the campaign will be carried across the country.
“So, it is important that parents and guardians should get their children who missed it vaccinated because that is the only way of dealing with the disease, otherwise children who will miss this opportunity again will remain vulnerable to the disease,” said Chitimbe.
Chikumbe further appealed to the general public to refrain from sharing messages that would scare parents from getting their children vaccinated referring to what has been happening with the covid-19 vaccine.
“We are aware that this campaign coincides with the Covid-19 vaccines which are causing quite a stir, but our appeal to all parents is that they should understand that their children that missed the polio vaccine need to get it now and let’s not scare each other,” he added.
Malawi last recorded a polio case in 1992