70,000 kids to get polio vaccination in Port Moresby

Picture: RNZ

PORT MORESBY, (THE NATIONAL) – More than 70,000 children up to 15 years old are expected to receive polio vaccination in the National Capital District, says campaign coordinator Morimai Ipai.

He said the campaign would start next Friday and continue until Oct 8 from 9.30am to 3.30pm (Monday to Saturday) in settlements, schools, bus stops, market places and other public areas.

“All parents and caregivers must bring their children to those designated sites with clinic books or not because our aim is to vaccinate as many children as possible and have them protected from polio virus and paralysis,” Ipai said.

“Spread the word to all the communities to bring their children up to 15 years old to get polio vaccination because it is safe, effective and free.

“Though your children have been vaccinated, you still have to bring them for this round of polio vaccination because we already have a case in NCD and the risk of spreading the virus is high.

“We will be having about 10 teams in those locations and we call on all community leaders, public and the law-enforcing agencies to protect the health workers who will be out there at your communities to vaccinate your children in these two weeks.”

Port Moresby reported its first polio case early this month, a six-year-old boy from 5-Mile settlement. Following this confirmation, more than 5000 children in the affected area had received the vaccination in the past week as part of an emergency response measure.

The Government declared a public health emergency on June 26, confirming that polio virus was circulating in the country. Two rounds of polio vaccinations were conducted, the first round in July targeted children under five years old in Madang, Morobe and Eastern Highlands. The second round last month covered Morobe, Madang, Eastern Highlands, Enga, Chimbu, Southern Highlands, Western Highlands, Jiwaka and Hela.

On Sept 11, two additional polio cases were reported in EHP.

More Stories