About 95% of children aged 9-59 months are the target for the vaccination against Measles and Rubella from Dec 4-8 2019, nationwide.
Public Health, Minister Manaouda Malachie , disclosed the figures during a press briefing in Yaounde on Dec 2, 2019.
As earlier announced, the second dose of the vaccine against Measles and Rubella will also be introduced nationwide for children aged 15 months and above.
The nationwide vaccination campaign aims to completely eliminate Measles and Rubella in Cameroon by 2020.
It will also limit the incidence of congenital malformations caused by Rubella.
Measles/Rubella: The Current Situation
Forty-two cases of Measles/Rubella infections have been confirmed in 2019, alongside 14 deaths.
But that figure is inferior, compared to the over 500,000 children killed by these infectious diseases in 2000.
Since 2006, the figures have dropped to less than 100,000.
Officials say new vaccination programs have seen deaths reduce from 550,100 in 2000 to 89, 700 in 2016 , representing 84% .
By 2017 , the deaths had gone down by 97%.
In September 2019, the number of Health districts specialized for managing Measles /Rubella epidemics increased from 7 to 34.
This increase has also greatly contributed to the management of Measles/ Rubella epidemics, known to occur in Cameroon, every three years.
Measles/ Rubella: The Vaccination Procedure
Since the vaccination was announced on November 20, 2019, community health workers have been sensitizing parents on the importance of having their children vaccinated.
From Dec 4-8, the exercise will take place in 189 districts known as fixed health centers, in the 10 regions of the country.
Temporary vaccination points will be set up in schools, palaces, churches, parks , travel agencies and other public places.
Accordingly, parents and guardians will be expected to take their children to the appropriate places for vaccination.
Why vaccinate children?
Vaccination is not approved by all parents. Some keep their children away for reasons ranging from religious to personal.
However, Public Health officials , have outlined five reasons why vaccination is a MUST for every child.
# It is efficient
# It is necessary
# It is simple
# It is safe
# It is free
The Minister’s message to parents is “let’s accept vaccination, it saves lives”.
Kathy Neba Sina