National Primary Health Care Development Agency (NPHCDA) has inaugurated the National Emergency Routine Immunization Coordination Centre in its determination to achieve the 85% national target for routine immunization.
Speaking at the inauguration on Tuesday in Abuja, Executive Director NPHCDA, Dr. Faisal Shuaib, said the centre shall function as the governing arm for Routine Immunization and projects within the country.
He said the centre would provide a national and sub-national coordination mechanism to manage the full implementation of the Routine Immunization programmes, strategies and other recommendations of various expert committees towards achieving Routine Immunization coverage of greater than 85% for all antigens at national, states and LGAs levels.
Dr. Shuaib told the NERICC team that the task should be handled in a war-room approach using cross functional capabilities for fast-paced analytic, frequent synthesis and rapid decision making in an intensive programme management manner.
“Although our Routine Immunization is a very vital pillar in our drive to eradicate polio and other vaccine preventable diseases, our expanded programme on Immunization effort have suffered from low uptake resulting in minimal national cumulative coverage,” he said.
“We learnt lesson from the recent outbreak of meningitis, one of the challenges we faced during the meningitis was that the stereotype that we witnessed was unusual. And we struggle to get it vaccines.
“Our partners, WHO and UNICEF have large stock pile of this vaccine for the global level, for all the loop stages of meningitis, we were able to rapidly request for part of the pile and that is what we use to mount the evacuation campaign in the meningitis outbreak. The outbreak has now been declared over due to the collaboration between government and partner.
“I assure you by next year we will not be going to global community for vaccine, we can provide this inward.”
Director, Disease control and Immunization, NPHCDA, Dr. Dorothy Nwodo, noted that Federal Government through the NPHCDA was making progress to eradicate polio virus transmission, with its effort to strengthen Routine Immunization.
Present at the inauguration were country representative from World Health organization and the UNICEF