BY SUNNY A. DAVID

Anambra State Government has mitigated the measles outbreak in nine local government areas of the State with the vaccination of about twenty thousand children in the areas and their surroundings.The Commissioner for Health, Dr. Afam Obidike announced this in a post-measles outbreak response press briefing held at the Jerome Udorji State Secretariat, Awka.Speaking at the end of the measles outbreak response, Commissioner Obidike said the State government swung into action immediately the World Health Organization and the Nigeria Centre for Disease Control alerted it about the outbreak in nine local government areas of Anambra East and West, Ayamelum, Ihiala, Idemili North, Nnewi North, Onitsha North, Njikoka and Oyi, where a total of eighty-eight cases were recorded.The Commissioner said the swift response through stakeholder engagement, intensified routine immunization of nineteen thousand, six hundred and nine children between the ages of zero to five years, and interministrial collaboration ensured the speedy mitigation of the disease, though regretting that fourteen children died from the disease in the State.While pledging that continuous vaccination and intervention of the Ministries of Health, Environment, as well as Power and Water Resources will be sustained to ensure that there are no longer repeat of such outbreaks in the State.Dr. Obidike sought for more collaboration with all stakeholders to ensure that those factors that increase the spread of measles, such as poor environmental and hygiene practices and poor uptake of vaccines are reduced to the minimum.He requested for active surveillance of all notifiable diseases by all those involved in disease surveillance and notification as a means of ensuring a healthier Ndị Anambra.Contributing, the Executive Secretary, Anambra State Primary Healthcare Development Agency, Dr. Chioma Ezenyimulu also announced that Anambra State Government will soon commence a standalone measles vaccination campaign, which she said will cover all the twenty-one Local Government Areas of the State.The press briefing was attended by representatives of their partners the World Health Organization and UNICEF.

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