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Bauchi records 1,472 cases of noncompliance in polio immunization

Gov. Muhammad Abdullahi Abubakar of Bauchi State
Gov. Muhammad Abdullahi Abubakar of Bauchi State
From: Ruth David, Bauchi

The World Health Organization, WHO, has disclosed that about 1,472 cases of noncompliance of polio immunization has been recorded in Bauchi state in the month of September 2016 .
Dr Habu Dahiru, the State Consultant for WHO, said this to Bauchi State Nigeria Association Of Women Journalists during a one day workshop on update of polio immunization, organized by the Bauchi State Primary Health Care Development Agency at the State Emergency Centre in Bauchi, pointing out that since Nigeria was delisted as a non-endemic country in 2013, cases of noncompliance began to rise.
He said that factors such as religious beliefs, sick children, political differences, hostility towards health workers and Oral Polio Vaccine Safety were reasons why most people rejected polio immunization in their host communities.
“From a recent survey conducted, we discovered that the husbands in many households were responsible for immunization of their children, so we had to work hard with traditional, community and religious institutions to influence the decision of husbands to accept the polio vaccine”, he said.
Dr. Dahiru added,“this is why we organized this meeting with journalists, so that you can assist in enlightening the public on the importance of polio immunization. We don’t want to force anybody, but they should be educated to have a change of mindset.
“As women journalists, you are very influential because you interact with these communities.You can educate them on the streets, in the market places and in their homes.”
The WHO Consultant said that as the state is making preparations to receive the IDPs, the State Primary Health Care Development Agency will ensure that major implementation plans such as Border synchronization between neighboring states, task force review meetings, social mobilization activities and release of funds are put in place to forestall any outbreak of the polio virus.
In her address, the Vice Chairperson, Nigeria Association of Women Journalists, Bulak Afsa thanked the organizer for organizing the workshop and promised that the Association will partner with them .

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