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Gov’t reaffirm commitment to eradicate Polio

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By Usman Oladimeji

NPHCDA has begun a community-based innovative research program.

The Nigerian Ministry of Health and the National Primary Health Care Development Agency (NPHCDA), have reaffirmed commitment towards ending the spread of all type of polio in Nigeria. Dr Faisal Shuaib, CEO of the NPHCDA, recently announced that the Nigerian government, acting through the NPHCDA, has rolled out and began the community-based innovative research programme in an effort to strengthen Primary Health Care (PHC) with improved delivery of reproductive, maternal, child, and adolescent health services across the states.

Dr. Shuaib made the assertion during the second quarter review meeting on Primary Health Care (PHC) delivery with the Northern Traditional Leaders Committee (NTLC) in Abuja. The NTLC conference provides an avenue for the NPHCDA and Partners to have open discussions with community elders about how they can help enhance primary health care in their areas. It also provides a forum for discussing ways to enhance PHC service delivery in the country and lower the “zero-dose burden,” or the percentage of children under the age of five who have never received any of the age-appropriate immunisations.

NTLC committed to ensure that all children are reached.

According to the NPHCDA CEO, primary purpose of the meeting is to discuss progress towards the goal of immunizing 70% of the eligible population against COVID-19, as well as to provide updates on the campaign against Circulating Variant Polio Virus type 2 (CVPV2) and plans to introduce Human Papillomavirus Vaccines into the Nigeria Immunization Schedule. He stated that the NPHCDA is thrilled to host the second quarter review meeting of the NTLC on PHC delivery.

His Royal Highness Smaila Muhammed Mera, Emir of Argungu and chairman of the Northern Traditional Leaders Committee on PHC delivery, has pledged that traditional leaders will keep working to ensure that all children are reached and that parents are helped to the point where they are in-demand rather than having to be coaxed into bringing their children forward to assess vaccines. WHO Public Health Emergency Advisor Dr. Alexander Chimbaru credited committees like this for Nigeria’s success in keeping the country’s polio caseload at zero.

Traditional leaders’ input was greatly valued on this course.

Also, Dr. Chimbaru noted that Nigeria has made progress in the management of CVPV2 as evidenced by a continuing decreased trend in the isolation of foreign poliovirus type 2 circulation compared to the previous two years. However, he added, an estimated 6.2 million children in Nigeria skip the first five days of school because they haven’t had time to absorb the NASA antigens necessary for protection against the zero-just children.

While the virus is still spreading in Northwest Nigeria’s insecure areas, strong leadership has made it possible for first responders and health care workers to reach individuals in need. He remarked that the traditional leaders’ input was greatly valued. His Eminence Muhammadu Sa’ad Abubakar, Sultan of Sokoto and Patron of the Northern Traditional Leaders Committee on PHC delivery, thanks Almighty Allah for blessing the committee to fulfill its mission for humanity in Nigeria and commemorated across the world. He also notes that the committee’s journey has been long, but very successful.

A meeting with the new executives was deemed crucial.

He also guaranteed unwavering support for all government actions, citing their status as important stakeholders in the country’s governance crisis, especially at a time like this when there are new provincial executives. A meeting with the new executives to brief them on the committee’s effort and dedication over the past 14 years has been deemed crucial by the Sultan. In attendance were also the 19 Northern states, the FCT, NPHCDA management, and development partners led by the WHO, UNICEF, and BMGF.


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