Free Yellow Fever Vaccination Due

The health ministry is to conduct a free
yellow fever vaccination campaign for all
people at risk in Masaka and Rukungiri,
districts where the disease has been
confirmed.

Three people with yellow fever have been
admitted at Masaka regional referral
hospital for treatment while one is at
Kebisoni health centre IV in Rukungiri,
forcing the government to intervene.

“Procurement of vaccines is nearing
completion and the vaccination exercise
is expected to begin next month. This
exercise is targeting people aged six
months and above,” a ministry
statement said yesterday.

According to the World Health
Organization (WHO), vaccination is the
major preventative measure against the
disease because it is highly effective,
generally safe and relatively cheap.

Currently, the vaccines are available at
four recognized health facilities in the
country and they come at a cost. These
are: KCCA health centre IV at the City
Hall, Norvic hospital, Kazuri clinic at
Entebbe international airport and The
Surgery in Naguru.

Dr Jane Ruth Aceng, the director
general of Health Services, also advises
people to always sleep under a mosquito
net to prevent the disease. Yellow fever
is an acute viral infection transmitted by
infected Aedes mosquitoes. Some of
those infected can develop a high fever
and jaundice resulting in yellowing of the
eyes and skin.

Meanwhile, two cases of rift valley fever
have been confirmed since the
declaration of the outbreak in Kabale
district last month. The first case earlier
admitted at Mbarara regional referral
hospital has been discharged while the
second is still admitted at Kabale regional
referral hospital.

“A total of 655 samples have been
collected for testing at the Uganda
Virus Research Institute and the public
will be updated on their samples.
Relatedly, a total of 1,057 animal samples
have been tested and eight tested
positive for the virus,” the ministry
statement said.

The ministry of agriculture is following up
on the cases to prevent spread of the
disease to other animals and to humans.
Meanwhile, the population of stranded
travelers without yellow fever
vaccination certificates continues to
soar at the Busia border post in
eastern Uganda as Kenyan and Uganda
authorities continue to turn away people
without proof of vaccination.

Scores have camped at the immigration
office on the Ugandan and Kenyan sides
for the last two weeks awaiting
vaccination or expiry of the mandatory
10 days of no travel after the
vaccination.

The Observer

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