GHS to embark on polio vaccination exercise

The Ghana Health Service (GHS) is set to commence a mass reactive polio vaccination for all children under age five in selected flash points in the Northern and Greater Accra regions from Wednesday, September 4. A sample taken from a drainage system at Agbogbloshie in the Greater Accra Region tested positive, giving government a cause to worry. This, amongst other reasons, led to the GHS’s move to embark on the vaccination exercise as part of activities outlined by stakeholders to ensure the public health emergency is contained. The virus, which was also last detected at Tamale in July after 10 years of the country being declared polio-free, appears to be spreading slowing. Director of Public Health at the Ghana Health Service Dr Badu Sarkodie said preliminary investigations and sequencing at the lab on the circulating virus points to some of the cases confirmed in Nigeria. He added that Ghana Heath Service is committed to ensuring the virus does not spread further, hence the swift intervention to embark on a vaccination exercise in the areas identified so far.

”Because of the polio end game, when we have a single case of environmental polio, we have a single case of polio in human confirmed, that area is declared as public health emergency of national concern.
“We took immediate measures to contain the situation and we are working to get the vaccine for Chereponi. Immediately as we finish in a week after, we will also conduct mass vaccination campaign for the eligible group which are children under five years in the Agbogbloshie area. I think it will be the entire Greater Accra [Region].”
The vaccination campaign is expected to expand to all the regions in the north aside the whole of the Greater Accra Region. A communique has already been sent to neighboring countries like Togo on the outbreak in the country while the country awaits the release of the needed amount of the vaccines to start the exercise. Some $1 million is estimated to be spent on the exercise. Meanwhile, the Ghana Health Service is cautioning the public to keep their environment clean at all times.
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By Sarah Parku||Ghana