General News Fri, 22 May 2009

Lab tests confirm eight wild polio cases

Laboratory tests have confirmed eight cases of wild polio detected in the country last year, Mr. Michael Acquah, Sekondi-Takoradi Metropolitan Disease Control Officer of the Ghana Health Service (GHS) said on Thursday. He was speaking at a meeting with Supervisors of the National Immunization Day (NID) and representatives of the media in the metropolis at Sekondi.

The meeting was to throw light on preparations for the third round of the NID from May 28-30 this year. Mr Acquah said the cases were believed to have been imported from neighbouring countries and it was because of the detection of the wild polio virus that four NIDs had been planned for the year to stop the transmission of the virus.

He said immunization was one way of breaking the chain of transmission and although high immunization coverage has been achieved, children were not safe from the virus adding children in the metropolitan areas and regional capitals were particularly at risk because of the size of their population. Mr Acquah said a lot more remains to be done and routine NID must be strengthened to reach all children who would be fully protected after having 10 to 15 doses of immunization. He said children must complete the routine immunization before they were 12 months old and the child must begin to have vitamin a supplementation at six months and must continue every six months until the child was five years.


Mr Acquah advised parents and guardians to immunize their children and to report cases of polio at health facilities to stop the virus from spreading. He said immunization volunteers would mark every house that they visited and urged landlords not to clean the markings for at least two weeks to ensure that all children were immunized.

Source: GNA