Cephas Iorhemen, Makurdi
The Benue State Primary Health Care Board Thursday announced the discovery of a dangerous polio variant in the state saying already, vaccination against it is underway as a response to the outbreak.
Besides, the agency has also disclosed an outbreak of measles in the state which it said needs massive vaccination for children of between 9-59 months.
Health Educator at the State Primary Health Care Board in Makurdi, Mr. Emmanuel Beeka, disclosed this at a news briefing in Makurdi, the state capital.
Beeka explained that although wild polio has been eliminated, the state discovered that variant is mingling through people from other affected places and water coming from those areas hence the need for total vaccination to completely eliminate it.
“In order to try to totally eradicate the polio, the vaccination activities are going on because the variant has been identified in some areas and to avoid some elements of doubt, total vaccination activities are going on to the targeted children of 0-5 years, 9-59 months’ children are being immunised,” he said, adding that if children are vaccinated at regular intervals, they will be free from polio.
“Some two or three months back, there was an outbreak of measles in 18 local government areas in Benue State and in that case, there is every need to massively vaccinate the target groups so that that too should be done away with.”
According to the health educator, the campaign for measles vaccination has been “scheduled at the national level” and it’s being implemented at the state level.