Parent, caregivers in Katsina urged to continue children vaccination to maintain polio zero status
Regular vaccination for children is a necessity to sustain Nigeria’s zero polio status and to stave the recurrence of the debilitating disease, Dr Shamsuddeen Yahaya, the Executive Secretary of the Katsina State Primary Health Care Development Agency has said.
Dr. Shamsudeen made this known while speaking during the celebration of the World Polio Day organized at the conference Hall of the State Primary Health Care Development Agency on Saturday.
UNICEF, Rotary International and other partners set Oct. 24 of every year aside as the World Polio Day to provide an opportunity to highlight global efforts being made to end polio globally.
It is also a day set aside to honour the tireless contributions of those on the frontlines in the fight to eradicate polio worldwide.
According to him, “Nigeria has been certified free from the most virulent of the polioviruses. However, for the poliovirus, if one child anywhere in the world is infected with polio, all children all over the over are still at risk of being infected.
“As at the moment, two countries – Afghanistan and Pakistan are still transmitting the virus. So, children in Nigeria are still at risk Moreover, we have children that are not fully vaccinated for various reasons. Polio can easily re-enter and infect children in communities with under vaccinated children.
“Continuing polio vaccination after achieving certification is not peculiar to Nigeria. Over 180 countries that have been polio free for many years are still conducting polio vaccination campaigns.
“Children up to 5 years of age are most at risk of being infected with Polio.
“Repeated vaccinations increase the capacity of a child to resist the disease by boosting the child’s immunity. It is repeated polio vaccination campaigns that has earned Nigeria the polio free certification, We must continue polo campaign to sustain this achievement and avoid a re-infection of our dear children.
“Repeated vaccinations increase the capacity of a child to resist the polio disease. In addition, IPV boosts immunity through blood, whereas OPV works through stomach. Both vaccines work together for maximum immunity”, he said.