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Uganda to Conduct Free Meningitis Immunization

Press release
The areas in which this immunisation exercise will be carried out for the next two weeks will be; Arua, Zombo, Koboko, Adjumani, Nebbi, Maracha, Moyo, Yumbe, Gulu, Amuru, Kitgum, Lamwo, Nwoya, Pader, Agago, Omoro, Dokolo, Lira, Alebtong, Kole, Otuke, Amolatar, Apac, Oyam, Hoima, Masindi, Buliisa, Kiryadongo, Amuria, Kaberamaido, Katakwi, Soroti, Abim, Amudat, Kaabong, Kotido, Moroto, Nakapiripiriti, and Napak.
Minister Dr. Jane Ruth Aceng flags off the immunization company
PRESS RELEASE

18th January 2017

FREE IMMUNISATION AGAINST MENINGITIS (Men A) IN HIGH RISK AREAS.

Uganda is one of the countries with highest rates of the meningitis A disease and also one of the 26 countries that lie within the extended meningitis belt of Sub-Saharan Africa, stretching from Senegal in the West to Ethiopia in the East. In Uganda, the most susceptible regions include West Nile, parts of Bunyoro, Acholi and Lango regions, Teso and Karamoja.

Though treatable, the disease can best be prevented through immunisation. The Ministry of Health with support from World Health Organisation (WHO) and partners have planned to conduct free Mass Immunization Campaign in the high risk 39 districts in Uganda to prevent any outbreak starting on 19th January to 23rd January 2017 for all persons aged between 1 year and 29 years.

The areas in which this immunisation exercise will be carried out for the next two weeks will be; Arua, Zombo, Koboko, Adjumani, Nebbi, Maracha, Moyo, Yumbe, Gulu, Amuru, Kitgum, Lamwo, Nwoya, Pader, Agago, Omoro, Dokolo, Lira, Alebtong, Kole, Otuke, Amolatar, Apac, Oyam, Hoima, Masindi, Buliisa, Kiryadongo, Amuria, Kaberamaido, Katakwi, Soroti, Abim, Amudat, Kaabong, Kotido, Moroto, Nakapiripiriti, and Napak.

The immunisation campaign was officially  launched in Omoro district at Lalogi Grounds on Tuesday 17th January, with the Minister of Health Dr. Jane Acheng. The Ministry of Health and partners have deployed Medical personnel across the affected districts to oversee the success of the immunisation exercise.

All persons and care givers are advised to go to the nearest health centres and other outreach immunisation posts in their districts for the the free vaccine. The vaccine is safe and effective and has been approved by the World Health Organisation. The vaccine will be administered by a trained health worker using a single injection on the upper arm.

What is Meningitis A?

Meningitis A is a bacterial infection. According to the World Health Organization;

The disease mainly affects young people between ages 1–30, occurring sporadically and in small outbreaks worldwide, except in the African Meningitis Belt where large outbreaks are common. Meningitis cases typically present with stiff neck, high fever, and sensitivity to light, confusion, headaches and vomiting. Even when the disease is diagnosed early and adequate treatment is started, 5% to 10% of patients die, typically within 24 to 48 hours after the onset of symptoms. Left untreated, up to 50% of cases may die.

Bacterial meningitis may also result in brain damage, hearing loss or a learning disability in 10% to 20% of survivors

For more information, please contact: The Ag. Assistant Commissioner- HEALTH PROMOTION MINISTRY OF HEALTH. Tabley Bakyaita 0772 521228

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