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Human Papilloma Virus vaccine in Nigeria

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By Mercy Kelani

Traditional rulers were urged to improve primary health care facilities.

Dr. Faisal Shuaib, the Executive Director and Chief Executive Officer of the National Primary Health Care Development Agency, stated that the government will invent a new anti-Cancer vaccine called Human PapillomaVirus vaccine in 2023 and 2024 into the national immunisation plan to curb the widespread of cervical, anal and oropharyngeal cancers. Dr. Shuaib said this in the quarterly review meeting of the South-East, Akwa, Traditional Rulers Committee on primary healthcare delivery. In his speech he said that HPV transmitted infection commonly leads to various health issues, such as cervical, anal, and oropharyngeal cancers.

In engagement with traditional rulers, Dr. Bassey Okposen Bassey, Director of Disease Control and Immunisation, representing NPHCDA Director, Dr. Shuaib, stated that the meeting with the traditional rulers is to strengthen primary health care facilities, aid promotion of reproduction and enhancement of adolescent health service in the five states in south-east. He affirmed that the meeting was aimed at ensuring well-functioned primary health service across the south east region, in a bid to support health programmes and provide necessary technical support.

Effective use of resources in the health sector.

He emphasized that the traditional rulers are important in the running of the healthcare sector, and implored them to take the leading path to enhance the efficiency of healthcare in their respective communities. He added that the organisation launched Community-Based Health Research Innovative-Training and Service Programme as a plan and effort to facilitate primary health care service for women and children. The initiative aims to make effective use of human resources in health sector, reducing mortality of new-born and mothers which will promote the capacity of health facilities through the recruitment of new medical officers of health, skillful birth attendants, using crisp resident doctors.

Importantly, in 2023 and 2024, the federal government in collaboration with NPHCDA development partner will introduce Human Papillomavirus vaccine into the national immunisation. They begged for the support of the majesties to participate actively and give their support during immunisation awareness, activities and programmes in the community. He called for cooperation by promoting healthy lifestyles, addressing misinformation and uncertainty of vaccine intake. While declaring the opening of the event, Dr. Onyekachukwu Ibezim, the Anambra State deputy governor, representing the governor, Prof. Chukwuma Soludo, asserted that a developed health care system serve as firm pillar for state government.

Curbing the polio virus with the papilloma virus vaccine.

Dr. Ibezim stated that a progressive approach to ensure the effectiveness of health care sector in the state has been initiated by the state government to ensure its functionality. In addition, Dr. Walter Mulambo, the Country Representative of the World Health Organization, stated that from NPHCDA data, there is an indication that in spite of the improvement in the distribution of immunisation, children who have not received vaccine or have missed the vaccination are still many across the nook and cranny of the country.

Dr. Mulambo asserted that effective and huge work has been dedicated to curbing variant strains of the polio virus with data of 90% reduction from the reported cases of variants of polioviruses which can be contrasted to the 2022 period. He said that the level of reduction shows the improvement amongst the affected population residing in various communities. Also, he stated the positive impact of the vaccine as no poliovirus cases were detected in the South-Eastern area.

Five traditional rulers attended the review meeting.

Emphatically, he added that the organisation aim to concentrate mainly on the status in South-East area, in Nigeria and across Africa as a whole. Igwe Lawrence Agubuzu, the Chairman of the South-East Council of Traditional Rulers and the Enugu State Council of Traditional Rulers, applauded the initiative and pledge to take active role as a prominent stakeholder in promoting primary health care facilities in different communities. There were five traditional attendees from the South-East, Anambra, Imo, Enugu, Abia and Ebonyi states, including health care stakeholders.


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