The National Primary Health Care Development Agency (NPHCDA) said 93.5 million doses of COVID-19 vaccines have been administered to 65.5 million eligible Nigerians from March 2021 to date.
NPHCDA Executive Director Dr. Faisal Shuaib said this in an interview with the Nigerian News Agency on Sunday in Abuja.
According to Shuaib, this is based on 2022 population estimates, indicating that only 46.3 million eligible Nigerians have not taken any of the COVID-19 vaccines.
It revealed that Adamawa State has also joined the list of 12 other states that have fully vaccinated more than 50 percent of their eligible population with COVID-19 vaccines.
The NPHCDA chief also said that the Johnson and Johnson COVID-19 vaccines, introduced in February 2022, account for 60 percent of current total vaccination coverage across the country.
He stated that the top five performing states in the country's COVID-19 mass vaccination campaign are Nasarawa, Jigawa, Osun, Kaduna and Kano.
Shuaib said Osun, Kaduna, Kebbi and Sokoto states have fully vaccinated at least half of their eligible population in the 100 days prior to the implementation of SCALES 3.0.
“The three best-performing states in the last 100 days of SCALES 3.0 are Kaduna, Kano, and Osun, with total vaccinations of 3.3, 2.8, and 2.5 million respectively,” he explained.
He said the 46.3 million Nigerians who have not yet been vaccinated should take advantage of the ongoing Integrated Vaccination Campaign to get vaccinated against COVID-19.
“They can visit the nearest vaccination site.
“The COVID-19 vaccine is free to all eligible Nigerians at all designated sites across the country, including the FCT.
“Vaccination cards are also free and are given free only to those who get vaccinated at these sites,” he said. .
Source Credit: NAN
The National Primary Health Care Development Agency (NPHCDA) has again appealed to Nigerianswho are yet to be vaccinated to get the COVID-19 vaccines.
The Executive Secretary of the agency, Dr Faisal Shuaib, made the call at a one-day evaluation meeting for COVID-19 vaccination exercise.
The News Agency of Nigeria reports that the meeting was organised by the Nigeria Solidarity Support Fund (NSSF), an independent partner, assisting the NPHCDA to drive the campaign for vaccination against CoVID-19. NSSF entered into agreement with NPHCDA in Sept. 2021, to support COVID-19 vaccination campaign across the country, but kick-started the project with six states, including Edo, Ogun, Nasarawa, Adamawa, Katsina and Imo. The goal, of the agreement is to vaccinate one million eligible Nigerians in the States Shuaib, represented at the meeting, by Dr Bassey Okposen, Director of Disease Control and Manager, COVID-19 vaccination war room, NPHCDA, said: ”the virus was still very much in the circulation.
”COVID-19 is still very active and there is need for Nigerians to get vaccinated and stay safe.
”People are still dying globally, there are countries that are still having new outbreaks, it is good we take the vaccine and kick COVID out of our country.
“We are not only doing COVID-19 vaccination at the moment, we are also doing integrated vaccination, along with routine immunisation, maternal services and other care at the primary healthcare level.
“As a nation, we have not achieved credibility on this, we need to get vaccinated so that we can still be safe as a country”, he said.
He said till date, 55.6 per cent of Nigerians have taken only the first dose.
The director also said that 44.6 per cent of Nigerians are fully vaccinated.
“The current drive under the leadership of the Minister of Health, with the support from the President and the entire presidential steering committee on COVID-19, has made us move the figure from 13 per cent.
“Our target is to ensure 70 per cent of the population get vaccinated before December 2022, we are working hard on this”.
Also speaking, Dr Fejiro Chinye-Nwoko, General , NSSF, stated that the organisation, conceptualised the meeting to get brief on the improvement of the vaccination on states the partner was already supporting.
She said with the coming of the independent partner, NSSF, the vaccination figure had risen from over four million Nigerians, where it was met, and had been able to increase the vaccination figure tremendously.
“In September 2021, NPHCDA approached us for support to increase the vaccination coverage, as at that time, the coverage was just over four million Nigerians who had vaccinated for COVID.
“We supported NPHCDA by donating N300 million for the vaccination in six states, and with that support, we were able to vaccinate over two million Nigerians.
“Apart from the direct support vaccination that we got from the six states, we were able to accelerate the vaccination all over Nigeria, which also led to the current number of 40 million Nigerians who have vaccinated.
“We have gotten the partnership and we will remain partners, we are working with them, advocating for more support, for more coverage, for more mobilisation to reduce vaccine hesitancy in Nigeria,’’ she said.
She added that availability of the vaccine was not a challenge, but the hesitancy is the major challenge, stressing that, NSSF was also working with NPHCDA to increase mobilisation and reduce vaccine hesitancy in other states.
According to her, in no disttant time, the NSSF will get the 70 per cent coverage which is the country’s target.
Also contributing, Mr Adis Mohammad, Executive Secretary, Nasarawa State Primary Healthcare Development Agency, appreciated the NSSF, for the funds.
Mohammed said the fund and with the support of the state government, the state healthcare agency was able to get the people to access the vaccine.
”When the fund came the state government and other partners like UNICEF, the state healthcare was able to mobilise the people easily.
“We were able to penetrate some communities, mobilise the people, as well as use the money for other activities like, jingles, buying T-shirts, handbills and posters to drive the campaign for people to get vaccinated.
“Our success story is also driven by Gov. Abdullahi Sule who gave us the enabling environment, no matter the strategy, if you don’t have the support of the government, the right environment will not be able to implement your plan.
“We have a government that gave us all the needed support for us to go out and mobilized the citizens of Nasarawa state to access this vaccine, this also included our strong vaccination team within the state, all what we carried out was team work,’’ Mohammad said.
Gov. Abdullahi Sule of Nasarawa State has restated his administration’s commitment promoting science education in the state.
This, he said would lay the foundation for the production of more indigenous doctors and engineers to meet the growing needs in the state.
Sule said this on Sunday at a reception, organised by Lafia Old Students’ Association (LOSA) for some of its members who were recently honoured with national awards by President Muhammadu Buhari.
The governor said that in quest to revamp education sector, attention was also focused on enhancing science education through the renovation and equipping of science laboratories in secondary schools across the state.
He noted that the shortage of manpower in the health sector in the state and the incessant industrial action by doctors had reinforced his government’s determination to lay the foundation for production of more indigenous doctors to fill the gap.
According to him, his administration will attract some private sector players to help rehabilitate the facilities, including science laboratories, in Government Secondary School, Lafia, Government Girls’ School, Garaku, and Government Science School, Wamba.
Sule added that Government Science School, Nasarawa and Government Science School, Akwanga would soon receive same attention.
He congratulated the awardees and other LOSA members for their immense contributions to the school and the society in their various fields of endeavours.
The governor thanked the association for recognising his efforts toward revitalising the education sector.
Also speaking, Dr Faisal Shuaib, Executive Director, National Primary Health Care Development Agency (NAPHCDA) and National President of LOSA, said that the event was also for the investiture of the governor as the association’s grand patron.
Shuaib explained that Suyle’s investiture was due to his contribution toward lifting the status of Science School Lafia and the education sector in the state.
He said that the association would continue to complement the outstanding leadership being provided by the governor to revamp the education sector.
According to him, LOSA is working toward making Lafia Science School the best in the country, in tandem with international best practices.
Shuaib said that the association had provided a clinic in the school and paid capitation to the tune of N4 million to the state health insurance scheme to enhance students’ access free health care.
The News Agency of Nigeria reports that the LOSA members recently honoured by the president included: Retired Justice Sidi Bage (CFR), Amb. Musa Ilu-Mohammed, a former Nigerian ambassador to Switzerland (OON) and Dr Shuaib (OON).
The Speaker of Nasarawa State House of Assembly, Alhaji Ibrahim Abdullahi, has commended President Muhammad Buhari for recognising Gov. Abdullahi Sule of the state with the Nigerian Excellence Award in public Service.
The Speaker told newsmen in Lafia on Monday that the award presented by President Muhammad Buhari on Friday to Sule was well deserved, especially on his developmental strides in the agriculture sector.
Abdullahi also commended Buhari for honouring Dr Faisal Shuaib, the Executive Director National Primary Healthcare Development Agency with similar award.
The speaker described the awards presented to the two prominent citizens of the state by president Buhari as worthy.
He said “it is also reflective considering the developmental achievements of Sule in the agricultural sector and Dr Faisal Shuaib in the health sector, especially his breakthrough in vaccination.
He congratulated Sule and Shuaib for their achievements and steadfastness in public service.
He wished them more God’s protection and guidance to advance more in the years ahead.
The speaker called for more support and prayers of citizen of the state for the governor and other leaders at all levels to succeed.
The National Economic Council (NEC), chaired by Vice President Yemi Osinbajo, says no fewer than 46 million eligible Nigerians have been successfully vaccinated against COVID-19.
Dr Faisal Shuaib, Executive Director, National Primary Health Care Development Agency (NPHDA) virtually briefed State House correspondents after a virtual NEC meeting anchored from the Presidential Villa, Abuja.
Shuaib said he made a presentation to the council on three broad areas—the COVID-19 vaccination update, polio eradication and also routine immunisation.
“In terms of where we are with COVID-19 vaccination, we now have vaccinated successfully, 46 million Nigerians.
“This represents about 42 per cent of the totally eligible Nigerians and it is in keeping with what the Presidential Steering Committee and the Federal Ministry of Health have been tracking in term of our targets.
“We have also recognised an increase in the number of people who are getting vaccinated; a few months ago, by the average daily vaccination rate was about 200, 000 people per day but now we are vaccinating over 350, 000 Nigerians per day.
“And this is really commendable; it is worth mentioning as well that the Federal Government has adequate numbers of COVID-19 vaccinations to cover all Nigerians.
’’ According to Faisal, there is the need for more Nigerians to come out enmasse to take the vaccinations.
On polio eradication, the NPHDA boss said that the last case of the wild polio virus in Nigeria was in August, 2016. “So, this means that as we celebrate world polio virus day by nest week Monday, President Muhammadu Buhari has actually his promise that he will not hand over a Nigeria that has children with these viruses.
“Then, we have seen in the last 24 months, increase in the reported cases circulating variant polio viruses but thanks the incredible work of states working with our partners under the leadership of the president.
“We recorded a decrease in the numbers of circulating polio viruses from 806 cases around this time last year, we now have reported 133 cases in 2022 given the same period.
“And then the number of local government areas that are reporting circulating variant polio viruses have also decreased from 186 to just 48 local government areas.
“Again significant improvement in the success rate; thanks to Nigerians coming forth with their children and getting vaccinated.
’’ He added that there had been massive improvements in routine immunisation.
According to him, Nigeria is only one of five countries globally where the pandemic did not negatively impact routine immunisation coverage.
“Again, this thanks to all the leadership we have seen at the national and sub-national level and of course, the hard work of frontline health workers,’’ he said.
The National Primary Health Care Development Agency (NPHCDA), has said that over half of the country’s eligible population have been partially vaccinated against the COVID-19 pandemic.
The Executive Director of NPHCDA, Dr Faisal Shuaib, said this during the handover ceremony of 22 sterling freezers donated by United Parcel Service Foundation (UPS).
Shuaib revealed that 58,075,837 people, representing 52 per cent of Nigeria’s eligible population, have received the first dose of COVID-19 vaccines, while 45,351,331 have been fully vaccinated, which represents 40.6 per cent of the eligible population.
“Making this remarkable progress amidst persistent disinformation and low-risk perception has been possible because of the significant support we have received from our development partners, including UPS.
“We cherish our partnership with UPS and will continue to work with all stakeholders to ensure that Nigeria meets its target of vaccinating half of its overall population against COVID-19. “As our country moves rapidly towards herd immunity, it is my firm belief that no country in the world is safe from COVID-19, and no business entity is safe from its adversities until all of us are safe,” he explained.
The NPHCDA said that the agency’s SCALES 3.0 campaign strategy offers a unique opportunity for childhood vaccination and other PHC services for beneficiaries concurrently with COVID-19 vaccination.
“We, therefore, urge parents to take their eligible children for vaccination against polio, yellow fever, measles and other vaccine-preventable childhood diseases in the same locations where the adults also receive COVID-19 vaccines.
“Our mobile teams are also in possession of all these vaccines when they visit your homes.
Please welcome them and present yourselves and your eligible children for vaccination as may be applicable,” he explained.
Earlier, the Head of UPS Foundation Africa, Mr Bassey Aneri, said UPS has done a lot and has so far delivered about 21 million doses of vaccines across the country.
Also, the Managing Director, of UPS Nigeria, Mr Micheal Umoh, said that a strong supply chain is very critical to medical, pharmaceutical and other aspects of health, saying it is one thing for you to produce and another thing for you to move it to those that need it and that is where the supply chain becomes very useful to provide last mile delivery support to the country.
The Minister of Health, Dr Osagie Ehanire, has urged traditional rulers to strive to ensure Primary Health Care (PHC) service delivery and penetration of COVID-19 vaccination in the South-East.
Ehanire made the appeal while inaugurating tthe South-East Traditional Leaders’ Committee (SETLC) on Primary Health Care (Services) Delivery in Enugu on Friday.
The event was organised by the Federal Ministry of Health in collaboration with National Primary Health Care Development Agency (NPHCDA) and Enugu State Primary Health Care Development Agency (ENS-PHCDA).
The minister noted that in order to push PHC services and COVID-19 vaccination forward, there was need to mobilise traditional rulers, who were very influential in their communities.
He said the ministry would rely on the traditional rulers’s power of advocacy and the respect they command among the people to push PHC services, which included COVID-19 vaccination, to the next and desirable level.
He said with the inauguration, the traditional rulers were made more relevant to issues of PHC services and should have input and oversight to ensure that centres in their communities functioned optimally.
Gov. Ifeanyi Ugwuanyi of Enugu State said that as gatekeepers of the communities, it was necessary to get them more involved in advocacy and ensuring that the PHC services were timely delivered to the people.
Ugwuanyi, represented by the state Commissioner for Health, Dr Ikechukwu Obi, said: “With the traditional rulers coming on board, we will soon achieve and even surpass our targets in various PHC services.
” He said that the state government over the years had strived in repositioning PHC services and structures, thus making the people to easily and affordably access PHC services at each ward in the state.
The Executive Director, NPHCDA, Dr Faisal Shuaib, also said that with the inauguration, the traditional rulers had been directly connected to the PHCs. He said: “there is no greater collaboration than working and going through traditional rulers to reach the communities.
“The people in the communities and localities listen more to them and the agency sincerely believes that the PHC services target will be better and faster realised through them.
” He called on the state and the entire south-east to do more in advocating increased COVID-19 vaccination and other PHC services.
The Chairman of the SETLC, Igwe Lawrence Agubuzu, said they had been part of the PHC before now but would this time personally ensure that all PHC services run successfully in the various communities.
Agubuzu, also the Chairman of Traditional Rulers’ Council in the state, said: “We are going to redouble our efforts by putting PHC services and COVID-19 vaccination advocacy at the front burner in our various communities.
“The traditional rulers in the South-East will also ensure that the PHC centres run optimally to the greater benefit of our subjects in our communities.
“We are going to use town criers, community and even our cabinet meetings to discuss PHC services and ensure that everyone in our communities is healthy and sound.
” The Executive Secretary of ENS-PHCDA, Dr George Ugwu, noted that the inauguration was a celebration of excellent PHC services Gov. Ugwuanyi had brought to the state through sound PHC policies and massive financial support.
Ugwu said that the inauguration would surely deepen PHC services and enlarge its coverage in the region as well as the building of more modern Type-3 PHC centres.
The National Primary Health Care Development Agency (NPHCDA) has again appealed to Nigerians to get said COVID-19 vaccines.
The Executive Director, NPHCDA, Dr Faisal Shuaib, made the call during the handover ceremony of over 604,800 doses of the Johnson & Johnson (J&J) COVID-19 vaccines from telecom giant, MTN.
Shuaib, who was represented by the Director, of Disease Control and Immunisation, NPHCDA, Dr Bassey Okposen, said MTN has been a faithful partner in the country’s development.
The NPHCDA boss said inpsite of vaccine availability, many people were still hesitant to be vaccinated.
“We seem to be having the wrong information or impression that COVID-19 is no longer existing or it is no longer a problem,” he said.
“The fact is that COVID-19 is still here with us in Nigeria and elsewhere in the world, and it is a dangerous disease that can surge anytime as it has mutating properties.
” He said the donation of 604,800 doses of vaccines means a potential 604,800 fully vaccinated Nigerians.
“This is to say that MTN is wishing Nigeria the fast lane to COVID-19 recovery,” he said.
He said Nigeria has successfully vaccinated 47,172,937 persons representing 42.2 per cent of the eligible population, with the first dose.
He said 34,242,083 persons have been fully vaccinated, representing 30.6 per cent of eligible persons.
He noted that 3,678,412 of the fully vaccinated persons have received their booster shot.
Shuaib appealed to all eligible Nigerians who are yet to be vaccinated to avail themselves of current opportunities to receive their COVID-19 vaccines.
“Over 47 million eligible persons in Nigeria have so far received the vaccines.
Although these people constitute less than half of the overall population of eligible persons in the country, they cannot be wrong to have taken the vaccine,” he said.
Shuaib said the agency has since rolled out its SCALES 3.0 strategy for the COVID-19 campaign which provides a unique opportunity for a whole family to seek protection against vaccine-preventable diseases concurrently in one package.
“This means that we are vaccinating eligible persons against COVID-19 and other diseases such as hepatitis, yellow fever, polio, measles, etc.
concurrently,” he said.
He urges parents to take advantage of this opportunity to get their eligible children vaccinated against vaccine-preventable childhood diseases as earlier mentioned.
He said with the continued support of partners and stakeholders at all levels, Nigeria will be able to attain herd immunity against COVID-19 and step up recovery in the coming months.
In her remarks, the General Manager of Regional Operation MTN, Ms Amina Dambata said the vaccines were donated based on the agreement reached with African Union to distribute vaccines to the African region.
Dambata said the J&J vaccines would get to those in hard-to-reach areas within the country.
“I’m pleased on behalf of MTN to donate these vaccines today,” she said.
The News Agency of Nigeria, reports that there are three approved or authorised vaccines in Nigeria used to prevent COVID-19. These are the Pfizer-BioNTech and Moderna and the J&J.
These vaccines are given as a shot in the muscle of the upper arm or the thigh.
The National Primary Health Care Development Agency(NPHCDA), has recognised and rewarded 15 states of the federation for the implementation of best practices in COVID-19 vaccination and Routine Immunizations.
The Executive Director, NPHCDA, Dr Faisal Shuaib, explained at the ceremony on Friday in Abuja, that the 15 states distinguished themselves with the highest qualities and best practices in providing technical and programmatic support to Nigerians.
The News Agency of Nigeria , reports that the award was organised to commemorate the 2022 African Vaccination Week, (AVN).
AVN is an annual event celebrated during the last week of April in synchronisation with other World Health Organization (WHO) Regions and World Immunization Week (WIW).
He said that It was also a day to physically meet friends and colleagues for mutual reflections and celebration of their collaborative efforts.
“Our history in the last two years has been inundated with the challenges of COVID-19 emergency, even as we were battling through to eradicate circulating variant polio virus, monkeypox and improve uptake of primary health care services in the country.
“We may not be able to satisfactorily reward those who will be receiving awards today, or adequately cover everyone who deserves to be rewarded.
“But we recognize and are sincerely thankful to everyone because we know that no matter how big a tree might be, it cannot make a forest alone.
He said that the agency prides on the progress made as a country in reaching 42 million eligible persons with COVID-19 vaccines as of Friday.
He added that about 29.6 million of the persons were fully vaccinated, while others were either waiting for their due date for the second dose or on the list of those who were hesitant of taking their second dose.
“Of course, the struggle continues, and it is a matter of sworn trust that we protect the health of our people.
“It is not easy walking through the high-impact of misinformation and disinformation and getting people to willingly accept the COVID-19 vaccine.
“To a lesser extent, we had some experience with polio immunization, but today we have been certified wild polio virus-free!
Even the emergence of the circulating variant poliovirus has been significantly controlled in Nigeria,” he said.
He said that the agency set aside a variety of awards for different categories of performances and ensured that the selection criteria were scientific and transparent.
“The selection process was backed by data and was rigorously scrutinized by partners.
“The reward for Hard work is more work.
Let us continue to remain committed to the cause of ensuring all Nigerians are protected against vaccine-preventable diseases,” he said.
The NPHCDA boss said the states awarded included Kaduna, Adamawa, Edo, Lagos, Ebonyi, Benue, Jigawa, Gombe, Cross River, Ogun, Abia, Nasarawa, Kano and Yobe. The goal of the AVW is to strengthen immunization programmes in the African Region by increasing awareness of the importance of every person (particularly every child and woman), needs and right to be protected from vaccine-preventable diseases.
It aims at keeping immunization high on the national and regional agendas through advocacy and partnerships and promotes the delivery of other high-impact lifesaving interventions.
The over-arching slogan of AVW is “Vaccinated Communities, Healthy Communities” However, to commemorate this year’s AVW, Nigeria adopted the theme “Long Life for All – Vaccinate for Healthy Living”.
The Ooni of Ife, Adeyeye Ogunwusi Ojaja II, on Thursday said , Nigeria recorded monumental success by achieving a “wild polio-free country” after three years of no recorded case.
Speaking at a celebratory event on Thursday in Abuja, Ogunwusi said that the eradication of polio in the country highlighted that public trust remained a key factor for a successful eradication programme.
The News Agency of Nigeria reports that the National Primary Health Care Development Agency (NPHCDA), also commemorated the 2022 African Vaccination Week. The Global Polio Eradication Initiative joins Nigeria and the global community in celebrating a historic global health milestone, three years have passed since Nigeria’s last case of wild polio.
Oba Ogunwusi in his address thanked all stakeholders involved in the fight against polio for their relentless efforts.
While celebrating the efforts of the NPHCDA Executive Director, Dr Faisal Shuaib, he urged all to believe in the country, insisting that there is going to be light at the end of the tunnel.
“But we’ve proven several times that indeed, we can achieve quite a lot of giant strides.
Look at what happened during the COVID-19 pandemic and how everybody rallied round this country.
“Behold, all the stakeholders from the private sector to the public sector, all rose to the occasion standing for hours, giving out information, creating awareness back and forth, and today our country is being celebrated for that,” he said.
The Sultan of Sokoto, His Eminence, Sa’ad Abubakar III, said that government and its partners should remain committed to improving the health and well-being of Nigerians, especially vulnerable populations.
His Eminence, who was represented by the Chairman of the Northern Traditional Leaders Committee on Primary Health Care Delivery (NTLC), and Emir of Argungu, Alhaji Samaila Mera, pledged the continuous support of Traditional and Religious leaders towards the achievement of immunisation in the country.
The Minister of Health, Dr Osagie Ehanire, commended the efforts of government and development partners, who made huge investments and sacrifices to sustain and maintain the wild polio virus free status.
“It is a great honour and privilege to be part of this third anniversary of wild poliovirus eradication in the country.
“Today we are commemorating this indeed very significant day and the progress we have made in the country after several decades of efforts to eradicate the virus, which has crippled many of our children.
“This day did not come easy as government and development partners made huge investments and sacrifices over the years.
The day may have come too late for those who have been paralysed and those frontline health workers , who paid the supreme price for the triumph of eradicating the disease,” he said.
Ehanire, who was represented by Director Family Health, FMoH, Dr Salma Kolo, said that for the millions of children who were prevented from the crippling effects of wild polio virus.
“These sacrifices would not go in vain and therefore, the significance of commemorating this day.
According to him, the past three years have been a mixed bag of events for the country as the impact of COVID-19 affected the health system, “Also the emerging security challenges in some parts of the country poses a challenge to the onslaught of the re-emerging Variants of the Polio Viruses (cVPV2), which are remnants in the environment as a result of suboptimal environmental sanitation.
“This can potentially be virulent and affect children who have not been enrolled in the Routine Immunisation system.
The minister said that the ministry has directed and guided the NPHCDA to mount the needed response to deal with these viruses within an integrated framework, to address other public health challenges including the ongoing COVID-19 vaccination in the country.
Earlier, Shuaib said with recent cases of wild polio virus reported in two African countries namely, Mozambique and Malawi, the agency had stepped up its surveillance to make sure that there was no silent transmission that could take place.
He said that the country’s polio eradication effort indicated that strict surveillance was vital in ensuring that overlooked vulnerable communities were identified.
He said that independent surveillance by key stakeholders and interested parties did not only ensure an effective intervention strategy but also encouraged support from politicians and private-public partnerships.
The NPHCDA boss said that the country was able to eradicate polio with support from religious and traditional leaders.
Public Health experts, who spoke to NAN on the sidelines of the event, said that It was wise to acknowledge that the need to maintain vigilance for any potential resurgence of wild poliovirus was still paramount.
They said though the country’s journey to wild polio-free status has not been easy, it has however, taught us some lessons that would place the country in a favourable position to combat future disease control and eradication efforts such as the current COVID-19 pandemic.
They, however, called on healthcare providers to be armed with verified and up-to-date information that would enable them to counter arguments against vaccines, especially vaccine distrust and hesitancy promoted by religious leaders, misinformation, and personal opinion.
The News Agency of Nigeria, reports that Nigeria celebrated three years of being polo virus free.
The virus when it infects can lead to paralysis, limb deformities, breathing problems and even death.
Poliovirus resides only in humans and passes on to the environment in the faeces of an infected person.
Nigeria is the latest country to have officially stopped endemic transmission of wild poliovirus, with its last reported case in 2016. Wild poliovirus has been eradicated in all continents except Asia, and as of 2020, Afghanistan and Pakistan are the only two countries where the disease is still classified as endemic.
NAN recalled that recent polio cases arise from two sources, the original wild poliovirus (WPV), and the much more prevalent mutated oral vaccine strains, the so-called circulating vaccine-derived poliovirus (cVDPV).
Vaccines against each of the three wild strains of polio have given rise to strains of cVDPV, with cVDPV2 being the most prominent.
cVDPV caused 689 reported paralytic polio cases worldwide in 2021. There were six reported WPV cases in 2021, a decrease from 2019’s 5-year high, a 99.2 per cent reduction from the 719 diagnosed cases in 2000 and a 99.998 per cent reduction from the estimated 350,000 cases, when the eradication effort began in 1988. Of the three strains of WPV, the last recorded wild case caused by type 2 (WPV2) was in 1999, and WPV2 was declared eradicated in 2015. Type three (WPV3) is last known to have caused polio in 2012 and was declared eradicated in 2019. All wild-virus cases since that date have been due to type 1 (WPV1).