“2019 Meningitis Vaccination Campaign was a success”

Wednesday, February 13, 2019

Communication officer of health ministry’s Expanded Programme on Immunisation (EPI) said the 2019 meningitis vaccination campaign was a successful activity, saying campaigners have met the target of vaccinating virtually all children in the country.

Saharu Kanteh said in this year’s vaccination campaign; the ministry of health and UNICEF were able to meet the target of vaccinating 95 percent of children countrywide. 

Speaking to journalists at the end of the week- long Meningitis A Vaccination with Vitamin A supplementation and deworming campaign on Friday. The campaigned which was conducted from 2nd to 8th February, covered the entire country. It was meant to protect children against Meningitis, Vitamin A deficiency and worm infestation.

The campaign was led by the Ministry of Health and Social Welfare, UNICEF and World Health Organisation (WHO) with support from The Vaccine Alliance (GAVI).

Mr. Kanteh said the vaccination targeted children from 1 to 7 years with Vitamin A, vaccination targeting 6 to 59 months children and deworming tablets from 12 to 59 months children.

According to him, Gambia experienced meningitis outbreak from November 2000 and March 2001, and between 1996 and 1997. “Meningitis outbreaks have killed people in The Gambia and the most recent outbreak occurred in 2012, infecting 175 people, leading to 9 deaths,” he said.

He said The Gambia conducted mass meningitis immunisation campaign in 2013, targeting people aged 11 to 29 years.

Sandra Lattouf from UNICEF said the campaign will help to prevent children from infectious diseases, saying it is a free medical service and parents must seize the opportunity to ensure that their children are vaccinated or receive vitamin A from meningitis. 

Author: Sanna Jallow