About 585,691 children under five years are expected to be immunised across all the 22 districts of the Central Region as part of the nationwide polio vaccination exercise.
The first phase of the exercise which started yesterday to end on Sunday is being carried out by 861 vaccination teams.
Addressing journalists in Cape Coast, the Central Regional Director of Health, Dr Akosua Sarpong, explained that vaccine derived polio virus type two outbreak was recorded in some parts of the country.
“This coupled with our on-going fight against the COVID-19 pandemic, has necessitated the need for supplementary polio type two immunisation activities in all 16 regions,” she said.
Dr Sarpong indicated that vaccine derived polio viruses always resulted when there was prolonged low vaccination coverage in children less than five years coupled with poor environmental sanitation challenges.
She explained that such conditions were prevalent in many parts of our country.
The Regional Director further said: “outbreaks of this nature can be stopped with two to three rounds of supplementary vaccination activities that boost or improve on the immunity levels of vulnerable children”.
She appealed to care-givers to take advantage of the campaign and immunise their children with the polio vaccine.
According to her, the vaccine would guarantee the protection of children against poliomyelitis.
Dr Sarpong stated that the vaccine was free, safe and effective at protecting all immunised children against lifelong polio paralysis.
“Like all other vaccines routinely given to children, occasionally, few side effects are experienced such as fever, pain at the injection site, and vomiting,” she indicated.
The side effects, she explained, usually resolved 24 to 48 hours with management, saying, “The additional doses of polio vaccine given during these campaigns help prevent polio, even if the child has been vaccinated previously, and do not cause any disease.”
FROM DAVID O. YARBOI- TETTEH, CAPE COAST