Government directs chiefs to arrest parents who refuse children polio jabs

An Assistant County Commissioner (ACC) in the Deputy County Commissioner’s office, Michael Wangila has directed chiefs, their assistants and area managers to arrest parents who refuse polio jabs for their children in the current campaign.

Addressing chiefs, their assistants and area managers at the old Manyatta Tuberculosis hospital in Isiolo town on Thursday, Wangila said the current polio vaccination was a national exercise and those refusing would be prosecuted for neglecting a government policy on health.

The ACC said that due to its position as a transit county, Isiolo is among the 12 counties at risk of polio and the government and other partners have planned an emergency polio response campaign to protect children under 5 years.

He said that the jabs have no side effects and urged mothers to accept the vaccines saying only one child would not be given the jabs due to allergy.

Speaking during the occasion, Isiolo Health Education Coordinator, Ms. Asha Duba said that Isiolo Sub County immunized 24, 213 which is 93 percent of the children in second round saying some women refused to immunize their children complaining of repeat doses.

Ms. Duba said Isiolo County is at risk due to high number of stop-over travelers from neighboring Countries of Ethiopia and Somalia

She added that environmental surveillance samples taken in sewage in Nairobi have detected a new polio virus and due to proximity to Isiolo, it is considered as a county at high risk.

She added that nurses and clinical officers will undertake the immunization campaign assisted by monitors who would be marking the houses.

Ms. Duba said the jab does not have side effects and was only meant for protection of children aged five years and below against the virus that causes paralysis.

She appealed to parents and community health workers who might come across paralysis to report to the nearest hospital or police station within 24 hours for quick action.

Source: Kenya News Agency