OGUN State Government, through the State Primary Health Care Development Board (OGPHDB), in collaboration with development partners in the health sector, has introduced Rotavirus Vaccine into the national routine immunisation schedule for children of ages six, 10, and 14 weeks of birth, to protect them against diarrhoea and to curb the spread of the disease.
Commissioner for Health, Dr Tomi Coker made this known during the flag-off of the vaccination at Sabo Agura Health Centre in Sagamu Local Government Area, saying the present administration remains committed to reducing child mortality through immunisation.
Dr Coker, in a statement made available by the Press Officer, Ogun State Primary Health Care Development Board (OGSPHCDB), Mrs Yemisi Fashola, stated that Rotavirus is a contagious infection that causes diarrhoea disease in infants and young children, adding that it leads to severe watery stool, vomiting, fever, and abdominal pain, as well as sudden death if or when it is not promptly attended to.
The Commissioner said the virus is responsible for about 215,000 deaths globally and approximately 50,000 deaths annually among children under five years in Nigeria, affirming that ‘’ the vaccination would serve as a preventive measure against the harmful diseases’’.
She reiterated that the State government will continue to partner with the Federal Government in the provision of vaccines at no cost, advising parents and caregivers to always visit health facilities for routine immunisation.
In his welcome address, the Chairman, Sagamu Local Government, Hon. Jubril Afolabi Odulate, represented by the Head of Local Government Administration, Pastor Phillips Ogunpitan commended Prince Dapo Abiodun-led administration on qualitative healthcare delivery for the overall well-being of the citizenry.
In their separate contributions, the State Coordinator, National Primary Health Care Development Agency (NPHCDA), Dr Victoria Adebiyi, and her counterpart in the United Nations Children Emergency Fund (UNICEF), Mrs Florence Molokwu and the Acting State Coordinator, of the World Health Organisation (WHO), Pharm. Folake Ogunlaja said the introduction of the vaccine was another giant stride at improving the health and wellness of children in the State, assuring that it is safe, effective, and potent at protecting children against the disease.
Responding on behalf of mothers, Mrs Olayemi Ademiju and Zainab Mohammed showered encomiums on the government for prioritising the health of children, promising to inform others about the vaccine.