Kenya set to launch immunization drive for 400000 children
NAIROBI, June 27 (Xinhua) -- Kenyan President Uhuru Kenyatta said Wednesday his government will launch an immunization drive targeting 400,000 children in the next three months.
Kenyatta said the campaign dubbed accelerated immunization outreach is aimed at raising the immunization coverage, which has remained stable at 80 percent, below the national target of 90 percent.
"I urge the ministry of health and the ministry of education to work closely with the County Governments to put in place measures to ensure that all children are vaccinated by the time they join school," Kenyatta said in a statement issued in Nairobi.
The Kenyan leader spoke when he presided over the launch of the rapid results response, which also served as the official send-off of specialist doctors from Cuba.
More than 100 specialist doctors from Cuba are in the country as part of a bi lateral arrangement with Kenya.
The health specialists arrived in the country on June 6 but had to wait for the determination of a court case challenging their hiring.
Three unemployed medics had moved to the court arguing that Kenyan doctors should have been given first priority.
Kenyatta said failure to immunize children will not only undermine their health and human dignity but will also occasion national risks such as disease outbreaks.
"I am therefore pleased to launch the national rapid results initiative on child immunization which will increase the number of children that are immunized against killer diseases," Kenyatta said.
He emphasized the importance of immunization as an important component of the ongoing drive towards the realization of Universal Health Coverage (UHC) for Kenya, a key deliverable in his Big 4 development agenda.
"The 100 Cuban doctors specializing in cardiology, nephrology and neurosurgery, amongst other specializations, are now ready to move to the counties and I am delighted to formally send them off to deliver the much needed services to the people of Kenya. Let us embrace and support them," Kenyatta said.
Health Cabinet Secretary Sicily Kariuki said that the launch of the immunization drive which included release of a variety of medical equipment, motorcycles and vehicles for use by health personnel would ensure a wider access to children in all corners of the country.
Kariuki said that her ministry was ready and delighted to welcome the specialists whose world acclaimed experience in primary healthcare provision will go a long way in strengthening Kenya's efforts to achieve universal healthcare.Source: Google News Kenya | Netizen 24 Kenya