BY METHEMBE SIBANDA
HEALTH practitioners have called on government to disseminate information on immunisation to communities in an effort to prevent diseases through inoculation.
This comes as the world yesterday commemorated World Immunisation Day, meant to raise awareness of the value of vaccines and immunisation, and to ensure that governments obtain the necessary guidance and technical support to implement high-quality immunisation programmes.
Medical and Dental Private Practitioners Association of Zimbabwe president Johannes Marisa said: “There are so many vaccine preventable diseases that are actually causing havoc at the moment merely because people have no information about immunisation. Cholera, malaria, diphtheria, measles and others are some of the diseases that could be averted if immunisation is seriously
He said all stakeholders in the country should be taught about immunisation, including apostolic sects that have been shunning jabs to prevent diseases as they do not believe in Western medicines.
“We should also make sure that vaccines are available everywhere and upgrade health facilities. The government must allocate 15% of the national budget towards the health sector as prescribed by the Abuja Declaration in order to get adequate resources for health sector activities such as immunisation. We need to make sure we also (embrace) the donor community as it plays a very pivotal role in the health sector through donations of vaccines,” Marisa added.
Meanwhile, in a message to commemorate the 2022 World Malaria Day, the World Health Organisation regional director for Africa Matshidiso Moeti said: “Over 602 000 deaths were reported in Africa due to malaria. Six of the countries, the worst impacted, are reported to have accounted for up to 55% of cases globally and for 50% of the deaths.”
World Malaria Day is celebrated annually on April 25 and is meant to highlight the need for continued investment and sustained political commitment to prevent and control malaria.