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Vaccine campaign kicks off

Update: October, 13/2014 - 09:08
A national measles and rubella vaccination campaign was launched by the Ministry of Health at a ceremony on Saturday in Ha Noi.

HA NOI (VNS) — A national measles and rubella vaccination campaign was launched by the Ministry of Health at a ceremony on Saturday in Ha Noi.

The six-month campaign aims to provide a combined measles and rubella vaccine safely to at least 95 per cent of the 23 million children aged between 1-14 years old throughout the country.

The campaign is expected to reduce measles and rubella infections in the community in efforts to eliminate measles in Viet Nam by 2017 and rubella in the future.

Speaking at the event, Vice President Nguyen Thi Doan called on the political system and people, especially families with children aged between 1-14 years old, to respond to the campaign.

"The campaign will play an important role in reducing diseases, infections and the country's child fatality rate," said Doan.

Doan also highlighted the results the National Expanded Programme on Immunisation has made over the past 30 years.

At the event, UNICEF representative Youssouf Abdel-Jelil called on the Government to keep immunisation high on the list of essential health interventions.

"I also urge the Ministry of Health to reach every child and make sure that no child misses out. A child unreached by immunisation is often the most vulnerable," said Abdel-Jelil.

"National budgets must provide for reaching the most vulnerable children. Wherever possible, we should use innovative delivery approaches and new vaccines," he added.

The combined measles and rubella vaccine is supported through a fund of US$34.6 million from the Global Alliance for Vaccines and Immunisation. As the only two-in-one vaccine licensed by the World Health Organisation, more than 600 million doses of the combined vaccine have been used safely in 39 countries worldwide. — VNS

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