Anglophone crisis: Expanded Program on Immunization hit by high insecurity

Anglophone crisis: Expanded Program on Immunization hit by high insecurity

All 20 health districts in the North West Region are facing high insecurity as out of 420 vaccinating health facilities, only 371 are fully functional as of July 2022, with 278 health facilities offering COVID-19 vaccination.

Anglophone crisis insecurityDue to high insecurity in the region, health personnel and facilities carrying out Expanded Program on Immunization (EPI) are having a hard time meeting their targets.

According to Wasu Chrispus, assistant regional surveillance officer at the regional delegation of Public Health of North-West Region, 250 communities in the region are hard to reach with Bafut, Anglophone crisis insecurityBenakuma, Kumbo west and Nwa being the most difficult terrains.

The performance of these 4 health districts are below 50% for all antigens. This is due to difficulties in geographical access, insecurity and lack of transportation means which makes it problematic for inhabitants of these communities to come for vaccines and vice versa”, Chrispus explains.

The attacks and kidnapping of health workers also contribute to the poor vaccination performance of the region. This has caused many health workers to flee from high-risk zones.Anglophone crisis insecurity

Anglophone crisis insecurity All 20 health districts in the North West Region are facing high insecurity as out of 420 vaccinating health facilities

To Raoul Saho, the regional communication manager of the delegation, scarcity of human resources has been a major setback caused by the number of health workers fleeing these zones.

One of such health facilities facing the wrap of the crisis is the Alabukam health center, which falls under the Mbengwi health district. The center covers over 3000 inhabitants but Anglophone crisis insecurityhas just 6 staff without a doctor. Not even a visiting doctor.

we often run out of drugs and vaccines which cause some persons and babies to miss out on the vaccination calendars and campaigns. Many have to travel to Bamenda for these services,” says Mukong Victorine, chief of center.

According to Wasu Chrispus, the vaccination rate of children has fluctuated from 2019 to present date depending on the situation on the ground.

Emmanuela MAIKEM

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