Ogun Health Commissioner Encourages Parents to Embrace Child Immunization

The Ogun State Commissioner for Health, Dr. Tomi Coker, emphasizes the importance of child immunization for mental alertness and disease prevention. She urges parents to support both routine vaccinations and the Human Papilloma Virus (HPV) vaccine for girls to prevent cervical cancer. The initiatives were launched with N150 million funding from the Nigeria Solidarity Support Fund. The Commissioner addresses misconceptions about immunization, highlighting its role in preventing brain disorders. The Fund's Executive Director, Dr. Fejiro Chinye-Nwoko, outlines plans to vaccinate at least 500,000 children in Ogun, Kwara, and Rivers States, aiming for a minimum 90% coverage. The efforts aim to bridge the immunization gap in Nigeria compared to other African nations.

Emphasis on Immunization for Mental Alertness and Disease Prevention.

Ogun State Commissioner for Health, Dr. Tomi Coker, emphasized the crucial role of immunization in promoting mental alertness and preventing brain disorders in children. She urged parents and guardians to ensure their children receive proper vaccinations. Additionally, she encouraged residents to embrace the Human Papilloma Virus (HPV) vaccination program, particularly for girls, starting the following day. This vaccine protects against cervical cancer, a leading cause of death in women after breast cancer.


Dr. Coker addressed these vital health initiatives while launching the Optimized Outreach Strategy campaign for immunization in Isewo, Ijebu Imushin, Ijebu East Local Government. The program received substantial support from the Nigeria Solidarity Support Fund, amounting to N150 million in funding.

Dispelling misconceptions surrounding immunization, Dr. Coker emphasized its purpose—to safeguard children against vaccine-preventable diseases like polio, measles, tuberculosis, diphtheria, and tetanus, which can lead to mental impairment.

She stressed, "Immunization is good for children because it prevents them from having cerebral illnesses and convulsions... It protects the brain... which is essential for intellectual development. This contributes to reducing unemployment rates as individuals with proper mental capacity can retain skills and gain employment."

Dr. Coker also introduced the HPV vaccine for girls aged 9 to 14, highlighting its safety and effectiveness. She cited successful cases in England and affirmed that immunized girls since 2000 showed no instances of cervical cancer. The vaccine is provided free of charge.

Dr. Fejiro Chinye-Nwoko, Executive Director of Nigeria Solidarity Support Fund, shared insights on the need to enhance immunization coverage in Nigeria. The organization partnered with Ogun, Kwara, and Rivers States with the aim of vaccinating at least 500,000 children in each state. The current immunization rate in Nigeria falls below the African Union's target of 80% coverage against vaccine-preventable diseases. The Nigeria Solidarity Support Fund pledged N150 million to this program, emphasizing their commitment to achieving a minimum of 90% coverage.

These initiatives underscore the importance of immunization in safeguarding children's health and intellectual development while combatting life-threatening diseases. The collaborative efforts of governmental and non-governmental organizations aim to significantly bolster vaccination rates in Ogun State and beyond.

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