Senin, 24 Oktober 2011


Story: Zainabu Issah
 Five million two hundred and fifty eight thousand children between the ages of zero to five are to benefit from this year’s  national immunization against polio which is scheduled for all the 10 regions in the country from the 27th to the 30th of October 2011.

This is part of the international health strategy to eradicate polio worldwide with the recent outbreak of the disease in the West African Sub Region.

The Chairman of the  Ghana National Poliopus Committee (GNPPC) of Rotary International made this known at a press briefing in Accra to raise public awareness of the ravages of polio and to encourage further actions to reduce the spread of the disease.

He said from the staggering 35,000 polio cases each year in the 1980’s, there are now only 1000 new cases world wide with Ghana recording no case of the disease since 2008. “It is very gratifying to know that we are this close to ending polio for good”, he said.

He further explained that to maintain the gains made in Ghana’s polio eradication, efforts were put in place to prevent the  importation of Wild Polio Virus (WPV) into the country and special immunization says were conducted in Brong Ahafo, Northern, Upper East, Upper West and the  Western region to contain the situation  in Ghana as a  result of the outbreak of the disease in Cote D’Ivoire in July this year.

Additionally, about  US$6.4 million from the Rotary Foundation through the GNPPC has come in as Rotary contribution to complement the Governments polio eradication efforts. These efforts include the provision of the needed operational support for social mobilization, printing of tally forms, promotional materials and polio T-Shirts for volunteers during National Immunization Days (NIDs).

Mr Mensah however urged Ghanaians to be committed in encouraging their children at the House-to-House campaigns as well as at the Child Welfare Clinics to get immunized against polio.
Ghana  in 2003 recorded eight cases of polio which was spread in six regions. The year 2008 also recorded eight cases in the Northern region.

Polio remains endemic in four countries ,Afghanistan, India, Nigeria and Pakistan(PAIN countries) with India recording only one case of polio so far this year. China for the first time since 1999 has reported seven cases of polio this year being imported form Pakistan, the World Health Organisation has confirmed.

The total number of cases for 2011 in the West African sub region by the end of september this year are two from Burkina Faso,thirty Five from Cote D’Ivoire, two from Guinea, Nine from Mali, 34 from Nigeria and two from Niger.

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