The Ministry of Health has rolled out a 10 days measles and rubella vaccination in Kisumu County targeting thousands of children who missed out of in the first round of the exercise.
Kisumu County Expanded Program on Immunization logistician Florence Akech said a total of 171, 000 doses have been received and distributed to 200 vaccination centres spread across the county.
This is expected to cover 158, 881 children aged 9-59 months who missed out on the first round of vaccination conducted between January and May this year.
The first round covered only 14, 098 with only 7, 208 children vaccinated in the second round so far.
Speaking during the launch of the program at Nyalenda Health Center in Kisumu Central Sub-County, Akech said all health workers including Community Health Volunteers have been trained and sensitized on the exercise, expressing optimism that all the unvaccinated children in the area shall be reached by close of the drive.
“We are taking advantage of any public meetings, barazas and other sensitization drives going on in the country to spread the message to ensure that all our children receive the jabs,” she said.
Kisumu County Chief Officer in charge of Health Dr. Gregory Ganda attributed the poor uptake of the vaccine and other vaccinations in the area to the Covid-19 pandemic.
He said since the pandemic broke out, only very few people visit health facilities where these services are offered, thus reducing the coverage.
“This pandemic has also caused a major financial strain affecting supplies across our facilities,” he added.
However, Dr. Ganda said measles remained a big threat to unvaccinated children, adding that every effort shall be made to reach those who have not been inoculated.
“Cases of measles have been reported in Tana River and Garissa counties and being a contagious disease we cannot afford to sit back,” he said.
Besides the health facilities, the vaccination shall also be administered at selected mobile posts and temporary posts to ensure that all the children are reached.
Kisumu is among the 22 high risk counties that the ministry of health earmarked for the exercise.