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WHO and partners scaling up measles vaccination to reach 2.3 million children in South Sudan

WHO South Sudan in partnership with the MoH, UNICEF and other partners including state directors general for health and Expanded Program on Immunization (EPI) officers of all states, gathered from 17 to 21 January 2017 at Juba Grand Hotel to plan on how to reach 2.3 million persons with measles vaccines in the face of a difficult operating environment.

The experts planned and discussed training of  lower levels on micro plan development at Payam (village) level;  implementation of measles follow up campaign in all counties;  how to enhance the skills of the key personnel in the areas of advocacy, communication and social mobilisation for the campaign; managing  the cold chain system including  vaccine storage and ice packs distribution; strategies for implementation in high health risk/security compromised areas; strategies for increasing the capacities of the personnel involved on other important aspects of the  campaign namely: monitoring and supervision, data management, managing  clients with adverse events following immunization (AEFIs) and timely reporting AEFIs during the campaign as well as waste management .

Dr Makur M. Kariom, the Undersecretary at the Ministry of Health acknowledged WHO and partners’ role in organizing the planning of the campaign and urged participants to stay focused and determined in order to achieve a 95% coverage.

Over 80 persons from different agencies and state ministries will coordinate the planning as well as  monitor and supervise the measles follow up campaign at all levels. They will ensure the development of county and payam level micro plans prior to commencing the nation-wide measles follow up campaign in March 2017.  The campaign will target about 2.3 million children aged six months to 59 months with measles vaccine.

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