WorldStage Newsonline– The Nigerian government has commenced documentation process for final certification by the Africa Regional Certification Commission (ARCC) as a polio free certified country by 2020.
Nigeria success of being WPV free nation was truncated after a resurgence of the WPV in a child in Borno State on 21st August 2016.
The Executive Director, National Primary Health Care Development Agency (NPHCDA), Dr. Faisal Shuaib said at a press conference to mark three years without WPV on Wednesday in Abuja that if ARCC is satisfied with the country’s documentation, Nigeria will be certified WPV free.
According to him, “this process involves a detailed assemblage and review of surveillance, Routine Immunization (RI) and Supplemental Immunization Activities (SIAs) data by the National Certification Committee before submission of the final documentation to ARCC in March, 2020.
“It is pertinent to state that the success we have achieved is still very fragile as this WPV free status would have to be maintained through a robust and sensitive surveillance system for Acute Flaccid Paralysis (AFP) and strong RI to prevent possible re occurrence of the WPV which may cause the ARCC to deny us the certification.”
Shuaib, further urged all stakeholders to continue to support the Polio program, through technical, financial support and political oversight to prevent the re occurrence if the WPV and stop the spread of all the other types of Polio virus in all states and Local Government Areas in Nigeria.
The Country Director, Bill & Melinda Gates Foundation, Dr. Paulin Basinga said Nigeria three years of success without WPV case reflects the coordination and trust between all stakeholders and is the outcome of successfully working towards a common objective.
Basinga said, “Eradicating all types of Polio will be one of the greatest achievements in human history, and will have a lasting, positive impact on the world’s health systems for generations to come.
“Our current success should not be taken for granted. So, we must continue to work towards reaching every last child with life- saving vaccines, as well as strengthening the surveillance to detect and respond appropriately to any threat of outbreaks, especially in hard to reach and conflict affected communities.”
In his Goodwill message, Permanent Secretary, Federal Ministry of health, Alhaji Abdulazeez Mashi said “the work had not be concluded “because there are rigorous processes involved before the country is certified polio free.
“We have to ensure strong Routine Immunisation and Sensitive AFP surveillance a quality of our Polio campaign. “
Mashi, however appreciated Mr President for his leadership support in ensuring overnight and resources were provided to ensure that the country is polio free.