FCT Board Complains Of Insufficient Meningitis Vaccines

The FCT Primary Health Care Development Board on Thursday said the meningitis vaccines it received would not be enough to be administered on all age groups in the territory.

Dr. Rilwanu Mohammed, Executive Secretary of the board, said that the board received only two million syringes and vaccines for the immunization programme.

 According to him the syringes and vaccines were given to the board by the National Primary Health Care Development Agency (NPHCDA).

He said the decision to administer the vaccine to people from age 1 to 29yrs. was because the age bracket was more vulnerable to the disease than the older ones.

“Everybody is vulnerable to meningitis but the most vulnerable are from ages 1 to 29; the disease usually kills them when infected; recent outbreak also shows that they are more vulnerable.

“That is why the Federal Government could only get a few of the vaccines for this age group, it is not because there is age limit, and globally there is shortage of the vaccine.

“It can affect adults at any age but the most vulnerable group is from age 1 to 29 years because their immunity is not as strong as those above 30 years.

“People are now reducing their age in order to take the vaccine and we have started having shortage,’’ he said.

Mohammed said the vaccines had no health implication if it was taken more than once within a short period, adding that the vaccine had protection for up to 10 years.

He said in regions where the climate condition was very harsh, and also if there was an outbreak, the vaccines could be taken after three years.

Mohammed said that those who took the vaccine two years back and were not residing in regions with harsh weather, there would be no need to take it again.

Mohammed advised that parents should avail the children for the immunization; also people should ensure good ventilation in the rooms, offices and avoid overcrowding.

He said the peak period for meningitis was between January and April.

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