Child immunisation campaign on the roll

2016-02-25 06:00
 MEC of Health Nomafrench Mbombo spreads the word at the taxi ranks.

MEC of Health Nomafrench Mbombo spreads the word at the taxi ranks.

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The Western Cape Health Department is doing everything it can to protect young children against diseases leading to death.

All children around the Mother City are immunised free of charge.

Immunisations are in line with international guidelines to prevent harmful illnesses.

Principal communication officer Jo-Ann Otto said: “Childhood illnesses such as mumps and measles have serious consequences when contracted in adulthood, often leading to hospitalisation of these patients.

“As parents and guardians of our future adults we need to remember that children must be immunised to enjoy the benefits of vaccines.

“Parents and guardians have a responsibility not only to the future health of our children, but also to the future health of our country.

“The more people that are immunised, the better the health of the community,” said Otto.

“The Human Papilloma Virus immunisation is a vaccine given to young girls that will offer them protection from cervical cancer much later in their lives.

“This is one of the only cancers that can be prevented by immunisation. It is one of the leading causes of death in women in South Africa. Over 3 000 women die annually from it.”

She said Western Cape government health teams will be visiting all government and special education schools throughout the province from 16 February to 18 March to give the vaccine to all grade 4 girls aged nine years old.

“The vaccine prevents the infection of the virus, the leading cause of cervical cancer in women.

“There are over 52 strains of the virus. Immunisation protects women from cervical cancer by preventing the virus from developing,” said Otto.

“No child may be immunised without parental consent. Consent forms will be sent home with grade 4 girls. Parents need to return the consent form to the school, even if they do not want their child immunised,” she said.

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