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Medical researcher urges FG to increase routine immunisation coverage


LAGOS – A medical researcher, Dr Bamidele Iwalokun, on Tuesday urged the Federal Government to increase the routine immunisation coverage to reduce child mortality rate.

Iwalokun of the Nigerian Institute of Medical Research (NIMR), Yaba, told the News Agency of Nigeria (NAN) in Lagos, that the country’s immunisation had fallen below the global target of 80 per cent.

“Nigeria immunisation coverage is far below the global target of 80 per cent at the district level and 90 per cent at other levels.

“Our immunisation coverage is still below 35 per cent overall, that is to say the percentage of Nigerian infants that have been immunised with all the vaccines is less than 35 per cent.

“So, we still have poor coverage and we have so many factors serving as barriers against them. They need to be addressed.

“Apart from routine immunisation which needs also to be improved upon, there is belief by mothers that through National Immunisation Day (NID), they would get all the immunisations for their children.[eap_ad_2]

“But, during NID not all immunisations are being administered. As such, it is the routine immunisation that needs to be improved on.”

An NGO, Global Polio Eradication Initiative said: “polio eradication strategy is the need to ensure more than 80 per cent immunisation coverage of children in their first year.

“While routine immunisation alone cannot eradicate the disease, good routine oral polio vaccine coverage increases population immunity, reduces the incidence of polio and makes eradication feasible.

“The importance of childhood immunisation is to protect the child against common diseases such as whooping cough, polio, measles, meningitis and pneumonia.”

According to WHO/UNICEF immunisation coverage estimates, 86 per cent of infants received three doses of oral polio vaccine in 2010, compared with 75 per cent in 1990. (NAN)[eap_ad_3]

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