Child vaccination drive launched in Uganda’s Arua City after measles outbreak
In response to a recent measles outbreak in Arua City, Uganda, the Ministry of Health has initiated a comprehensive vaccination campaign targeting children aged 6 months to 15 years. The effort aims to curtail transmission, bridge immunity gaps, and safeguard public health in the region.
Vaccination activities are being rolled out across schools and community outreach posts. All children within the specified age group are eligible for the measles vaccine, regardless of their previous vaccination status. This inclusive approach seeks to maximize population immunity and prevent future outbreaks.
In addition to vaccination efforts, surveillance measures have been bolstered to detect and respond swiftly to any potential cases. Active case-finding strategies are being employed both within health facilities and communities to identify and isolate affected individuals promptly.
The African Field Epidemiology Network (AFENET) is collaborating closely with the Ministry of Health in Uganda and other partners to execute a 10-day (from 3rd February 2024 to 17th February 2024) school and community outreach program, spanning from January 4th to January 16th, 2023. “Measles is most often seen in people who aren’t immunized. This largely includes infants under 5yrs but also extends to older children and even adults who are unvaccinated. Outbreaks like this place renewed importance on vaccines, and why it’s critical to achieve and maintain high vaccine coverage, which protects the population as a whole. That’s what this response is aimed at, to find the cases, manage them then protect the community through vaccination,” said Mr. Joseph Magoola, an Epidemiologist at AFENET.
The ongoing vaccination campaign underscores the importance of proactive healthcare interventions in safeguarding community well-being. Through collaborative efforts and targeted initiatives, stakeholders are striving to mitigate the impact of the measles outbreak and strengthen public health resilience in Arua City.