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WHO carries out cholera vaccination in high-risk districts in Somalia

Xinhua,December 08, 2017 Adjust font size:

MOGADISHU, Dec. 7 (Xinhua) -- The World Health Organization (WHO) said Thursday it has successfully concluded the second oral cholera vaccination campaign in high-risk district in Banadir region of south Somalia.

The WHO said the campaign was implemented using the house-to-house vaccination strategy and mobilizing a total of 29 supervisors, over 20 monitors, and 196 social mobilizers from the UN health agency and the Somali health ministry.

"As an integrated part of the current outbreak response strategy, WHO mobilized more than 2 million doses of oral cholera vaccines to be administered to vulnerable population in 11 districts in Somalia determined to be at high risk for further spread of the disease," the UN agency said in a statement issued in Mogadishu.

The Horn of Africa nation has been experiencing cholera outbreaks since a decade ago.

The WHO said as of November, cumulative suspected cases of acute watery diarrhea (AWD)/cholera stood at 78,596, including 1,159 deaths, compared to 15,621 cases, including 531 deaths, for the same period of 2016, in 55 districts in 19 regions of Somalia.

The WHO said a strong social mobilization and community engagement were powerful tools that enabled the implementation of the vaccination campaign in the 11 targeted districts of the region.

It said 149 trained vaccination teams of four members each were also deployed in target areas to administer the vaccine to the population.

To protect an individual from acquiring cholera, the WHO said, two doses of the vaccine were required to be given on two rounds separated by a minimum 14-day interval to complete the vaccination cycle.

It said the demand and acceptability for the oral cholera vaccine in Banadir Region have been overwhelming, especially in camps for the internally displaced and in slums. Enditem