Damascus, SANA-Health Ministry, in cooperation with the World Health Organization (WHO) and the UN Children’s Fund (UNICEF) is gearing up to launch a nationwide polio vaccination campaign targeting nearly 3 million children under the age of five.
The campaign, the ninth to be launched by the ministry, lasts from October 19th until 23th.
Director of the healthcare department at the Ministry Dr. Ahmad al-Abboud explained, during a workshop for journalists organized at Umayya Hotel in Damascus, that the campaign comes in the context of the ministry’s efforts to immunize children against the diseases that are controllable by vaccines.
The campaign will also reach areas deemed “hotspots or inaccessible, as well as shelters housing displaced citizens,” he added.
According to al-Abboud, the purpose of the campaign, which will coincide with similar campaigns in eight countries surrounding Syria, is to stem the spread of polio in Syria and preclude the emergence of new cases.
He indicated that the campaign will primarily depend on healthcare centers and mobile teams using microphones, not to mention house-to-house roaming teams.
By the end of 2013, 35 polio cases have been confirmed in Syria, distributed in Deir Ezzor, Aleppo, Hassaka and Idleb. The last confirmed case emerged on January 21, 2014 in al-Salamieyh area in Hama province.