Home Uncategorized Cross River Flags Off World Immunization Week, Assures End To Maternal Mortality

Cross River Flags Off World Immunization Week, Assures End To Maternal Mortality

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Tina Ezin , Calabar 

Cross River, commissioner for Health,  Dr. Janet Ekpenyong administering the vaccine on a child during the ceremony.

Cross River state government has flagged off this year’s World Immunization Week (WIW) as it assured of zero maternal mortality.

The event, with the theme; “The Big Catch” supported by United Nations Children’s Fund (UNICEF) and World Health Organization (WHO) and the State Ministry of Health, was flagged off by the State Primary Healthcare Development Agency (CRSPHCDA). 

While flagging off the Immunization week activities shortly after a sensitisation walk at the weekend, the Commissioner for Health, Dr Janet Ekpenyong said, “The World Immunization Week is celebrated every last week of April, for this year, it was from 21st to 30th of April and for us in Cross River State and we have just concluded a walk as well as outreach that we have been using to sensitize the people on the importance of immunization and using it as an opportunity to reach out to every caregiver, every parents.

“This is to ensure that their children are fully vaccinated. We know that in our various facilities, we offer routine immunization, for some reasons or the other, parents might because of their busy schedule may forget to take their kids to health facilities, this affords us such opportunity and we encourage them to as soon as possible, capitalize on such and get their children vaccinated. Our pregnant women are not left out because it is important that they have to take their tetanus injection (TTs) because that will help protect them as well as their children.” She stated.

Speaking on the significance of the WIW, the Director, Disease Control and Immunization, Cross River, Joy Chabo also known as “Mama Immunization” , said, “This immunization week is actually a very welcome idea to us because it is giving us the opportunity to celebrate all the gains in immunization.

“Africa Vaccination week or World Immunization Week is “The Big Catch Up” in the sense that every year we have a lot of gains we have accumulated from immunization but when COVID pandemic came with all the lock down, people were not responding again, so it kind of deprived us of a lot of gains. Because of lockdown, we had defaulters,. So now that the COVID pandemic is abetting, they are now tagging it the Big Catch Up. It is an opportunity to go all out, to pull out defaulters and see how we can catch up again with the gains we had which COVID was actually depriving us, we want to catch up with it to meet up.

” It is something that we cannot over emphasize the benefits. It help prevent our children from all birthing diseases, prevent pregnant women from tetanus, prevent everyone from 18 years and above from COVID disease. So we have gain a lot from it, it’s worth celebrating.

“It’s integrated because right now, we have stopped doing programme in silus, It’s actually not cost effective. Immunization is not really standing alone, even if it’s a major driver so we carry along side Malaria, HIV, blood pressure check, we do all for free. ” Chabo explained.

In the same vain, the Director General, Cross River State Primary Healthcare Development Agency (CRSPHCDA) Mrs. Abasi Offiong noted that children from zero to six months are to be  vaccinated while pregnant women are also not left out.

She added,” we are using this medium to do contact tracking, you know, COVID kept us at home, so this flag off is to remind them that they need to immunize their children. The vaccines are Available. That child belongs to the government so they must be alive, healthy and strong. And without the mother, there is no child, so the pregnant women are also giving tetanus injections and other vaccines because the mother must be healthy to give birth to a healthy child. 

“Not just because it is Immunization week, all our primary healthcare across the 18 local government are
as are open on a daily basis to give vaccines to the pregnant mothers and children.” DG CRSPHCDA stressed.

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