The Government of Nigeria – with support from the World Health Organization (WHO), Gavi, the Vaccine Alliance and UNICEF aims to vaccinate 26.2 million people this year through preventive campaigns. The second phase of its biggest-ever yellow fever campaign seeks to establish high population immunity nationwide and began today.

This step of the campaign, which is funded by Gavi will run from 22 November to 1 December 2018 and will target 18.6 million children and adults in Plateau, Sokoto, Kebbi, Niger and Borno states as well as the Federal Capital Territory.

“The vaccination will be for people within 9 months to 44 years cohort, parents are advised to avail themselves and their children to partake in the vaccination; The vaccine is free, safe and effective,” said Dr Joseph Oteri, Director of Special Duties at Nigeria’s National Primary Health Care Development Agency.

Yellow fever is caused by a virus spread through the bite of infected mosquitos. Some patients can develop serious symptoms, including high fever and jaundice (yellowing of the skin and eyes), but the disease can be easily prevented by a vaccine that provides immunity for life.

“Immunizing millions of people is a massive undertaking,” said Dr Matshidiso Moeti, WHO Regional Director for Africa. “But this achievement will represent a huge step towards protecting people from the potentially deadly viral haemorrhagic disease not only in Nigeria but in the African region.”

For more information please visit https://www.afro.who.int