Kenya To Launch Measles Vaccine Campaign

The Kenya Ministry of Public Health on Saturday will launch a $1.8 million measles vaccination campaign targeting “1.3 million children who have not been vaccinated against the disease since July 2006,” Business Daily Africa reports. “Measles has become a major public concern in the country and in northern Kenya refugee camps in particular,” as the government has found itself “unable to screen refugees flooding into the country through Kenya’s porous northern border,” the news service writes (Mukumu, 9/18).

During a recent press briefing, Public Health Minister Beth Mugo warned of the devastating impact the measles outbreak could have on nearly seven million Kenyan children, the Standard reports (Mwai, 9/17).

The integrated vaccine initiative, which represents the government’s growing interest in preventative health, will run for one week and will also offer Vitamin A supplements to children under age five across the country and “an oral polio vaccine to 113,286 children in Turkana District,” Business Daily Africa writes. Vaccination teams will visit schools, homes and “places of worship,” Mugo said.

The campaign is supported through a partnership between the WHO, UNICEF, Kenya Red Cross and others (9/18).

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