Measles Vaccinations

Measles has been a problem in Uganda for many years. Since the Safe Motherhood programme began, 20-40 children per month have been vaccinated. A further 15-20 children were vaccinated each month at Kimtab Clinic. More recently, the incidence of measles in Uganda has increased. In early 2019, Thabbishah found that the vaccinations in the Safe Motherhood programme had gone up to 120-140 per month. The number at Kimtab Clinic stayed about the same. When she investigated this, she found that parents who live outside her normal “catchment area” were bringing their children to the Safe Motherhood clinics to be vaccinated, because there was nowhere else for them to go. She decided she launch a measles vaccination campaign to contact and talk with every family in the village and its surrounding area, inviting parents to have their children vaccinated. She had the support of the District Health Officer, who made the vaccine available and loaned some of his staff to support the Kimtab Clinic Team. She also obtained agreement from local community leaders and, in some cases, went with local police officers in attendance in view of instances of hostility to what  she was doing. In the four months from April to July 2019, her campaign led to an additional 2496 children being vaccinated. She had also contacted a large number of families with children too young for vaccination but who agreed to being them to a Safe Motherhood clinic when they were old enough. At this point she felt she had gone as far as she reasonably could and the campaign was stopped. However routine measles vaccinations at Kimtab Clinic and at the Safe Motherhood outreach clinics is still continuing.

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