Iraq launches the Second Vaccination Week

By the World Health Organisation (WHO).

By launching the second national vaccination week, Iraq calls all partners to stand together and make the prevention of diseases a priority for all,” said H.E Dr. Hamad Amin Majeed, the Minister of Health in Iraq. “Together, we can protect our children from preventable deadly diseases in 2011 and beyond.

Immunization is one of the most important successful and cost-effective intervention a family can take to help assure their children grow up to be strong and healthy in their community. Millions of cases of disease and thousands of deaths in children can be prevented each year through the most effective tools of immunization.

This year is unique for Iraq, during the immunization week that started on 24th and will last till 30th where all Iraq’s community will be engaged in a variety of innovative and combined advocacy, education and communication activities in all over Iraq on the importance of immunization to save children from needless suffer, the new vaccine package including its treatment, vaccine schedules, registration and admission.

Dr. Syed Jaffer Hussain, WHO Representative – Iraq stated: “Iraq Immunization Week aims to help Iraq’s advanced plans to ensure a universal immunization by using the power of advocacy and targeted communication to boost awareness and increase the success of immunization programmes.” Adding that, “these efforts aim to reach people who have not been immunized or did not receive all the needed vaccinations.”

According to Ministry of Health estimates, 93% of infants received the first DPT1 dose, whereas, 84% received the DPT3 dose, however 9.8% failed to come to the third dose. “Some of those who are not immunized live in insecure areas. They lack access to basic health services. Others are not immunized due to little awareness.

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