Nigeria Runs Out Of Yellow Fever Vaccine

On 05/Feb/2014 / In Medical News

 Nigeria faces a renewed risk of losing many children this year to vaccine preventable diseases, arising from potential vaccine stock-out.
A release signed by the President, the Nigerian Academy of Science, Prof. Oyewale Tomori, stated that last year, Nigeria experienced a major measles vaccine stock-out resulting in the occurrence of 57,892 cases of measles, resulting in 348 deaths.
Tomori also recalled that in 2012, the number of reported measles cases was 11,061, with 126 deaths.
“This represents more than 500 per cent increase in the number of measles cases from 2012 to 2013. Indeed, the reported number of measles cases in 2013 was the highest in the last six years,” Tomori said.
The release further stated that 78 per cent of the 2013 measles cases occurred in children between the age of nine and 59 months.
“Significantly, 88 per cent of the children coming down with measles had not received a single dose of measles vaccine. With the measles vaccine stock-out in 2013, our national measles coverage rate of 42 per cent was just about half of the coverage rate of 80 per cent for all vaccines recommended by the World Health Organisation,” Tomori said.
The scientists also lamented that though Nigeria had the largest population of people in Africa at the risk of contracting Yellow fever, vaccine coverage was at an alarmingly low rate of 35 per cent in 2012 also as a result of stock-out of the vaccine.
He also recalled that last year, there were stock-outs of the BCG, Hepatitis B and Yellow fever vaccines at various times.
According to the October 2013 edition of the Routine Immunisation and Logistics Feedback, published by the National Primary Health Care Development Agency, the anticipated stock-out dates for Expanded Programme on Immunisation vaccines are: DTP and measles (January 2014), BCG and HepB (February 2014), TT (March 2014), OPV (April 2014) and the DPT+HepB+Hib combo (May 2014).
“We had exhausted our stock of Yellow fever vaccine since December 2013; while some frantic efforts are being made to procure more vaccines, the current stock level of vaccines will be completely depleted by March/April 2014.
“With the 2014 budget yet to be approved by the National Assembly, the Federal Government may not be able to release funds on time to procure vaccines needed for the rest of the year.

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