December 2022: Partner News Roundup

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Malawi began a landmark malaria vaccination drive on November 29. Part of the world’s first large-scale immunization campaign against the disease, the initial phase aims to reach 330,000 children in 11 of the country’s 28 districts with the first dose of the four-dose Mosquirix vaccine. BBC

Spotlight on Cholera Campaigns

Syria conducted an oral cholera vaccination drive December 4-15, seeking to reach children over age 1 with 2 million doses of OCV. While tens of thousands of suspected acute watery diarrhea cases have been reported in all governorates since an outbreak was declared on September 10, the campaign took place in the most affected regions: Aleppo, Deir Ezzor, Hasaka and Raqqa. The effort enlisted 63 health centers, 685 mobile teams and 2,269 health workers. UNICEF; SANA

Haiti began the first phase of a cholera outbreak response effort on December 18, targeting populations over age 1 in hard-hit areas in the Ouest department (including Carrefour, Cité Soleil, Delmas, Tabarre and Port-au-Prince) and the Centre department (Mirebalais). The country received a shipment of around 1.17 million OCV doses from WHO’s ICG on December 12. PAHO; Haitian Times

Amid a surge of cholera outbreaks worldwide, WHO warned on December 16 that the emergency global cholera vaccine stockpile held by the International Coordinating Group (ICG) is “currently empty or extremely low.” Around 30 countries have reported outbreaks this year, about a third higher than in a typical year. Reuters

Outbreak Response

Egypt launched a national polio vaccination drive on December 11, targeting 16 million children under 5. The four-day campaign took place in health centers as well as door to door and at train stations, gatherings near mosques, churches, clubs, markets, parking lots, parks, and on buses and subways. The annual campaign used 90,000 workers encompassing 54 vaccination teams. The National News; Egypt Independent

Afghanistan ran an integrated measles and polio immunization campaign November 26-December 12, vaccinating 5.36 million children ages 9-59 months against measles and 6.1 million children under age 5 against polio. During the event, 4,341 vaccination teams covered 329 districts in all 34 provinces. It was the first nationwide measles and polio vaccination drive since the Taliban returned to power in August 2021. WHO Afghanistan

Kenya ran a vaccination campaign against measles and rubella December 9-18, targeting 1.2 million children ages 9 months to 59 months in six high-risk counties: Garissa, Mandera, Marsabit, Nairobi, Turkana and West Pokot (including two West Pokot refugee camps). Launched in response to confirmed countrywide outbreaks caused by low immunization rates and frequent migration, the campaign used both fixed and temporary vaccination centers. Kenya MoH; Kenya News; The Star

Pakistan’s Lakki Marwat district began a polio vaccination campaign on December 13, aiming to reach 193,252 children under age 5 over five days. Over 1,300 police officers were deployed to accompany 894 mobile vaccination teams in the door-to-door campaign as well as to provide security at 53 fixed vaccination posts at hospitals. Dawn

Nigeria’s Lagos state ran a polio vaccination drive December 17-20, aiming to reach children under age 5. Vaccination teams went house to house to administer nOPV2 drops and visited hospitals, schools, churches, mosques, recreational grounds, shopping plazas, and other public places. Punch

India’s Maharashtra state launched a special two-phase vaccination effort against measles, mumps and rubella (MMR), focusing on children who missed at least one MMR dose and children with moderate and severe malnutrition. The first phase took place December 15-25, and the second is slated for January 15-25. The state has reported at least 1,055 measles infections and 20 measles-related deaths in addition to over 16,597 suspected cases. Hindustan Times (1); The Indian Express; Hindustan Times (2)

Integrated Campaigns

Ethiopia launched a nationwide measles vaccination drive on December 22, aiming to reach 15.5 million children under age 5. The 10-day campaign also integrated malnutrition interventions such as vitamin A supplementation, maternal health screenings, and Covid-19 vaccinations. Ethiopia MoH; Capital Ethiopia

Iran began an integrated vaccination effort for refugees and foreign nationals on December 31, offering inoculations against polio, measles and Covid-19 in door-to-door visits in high-risk areas across the country. Tehran Times

Zimbabwe ran the second round of a polio vaccination campaign December 1-4, targeting all children under age 5 regardless of vaccination status. The country integrated a Covid-19 inoculation drive into the polio campaign so that parents and older siblings of vaccine recipients could get their Covid-19 shots. The Covid-19 effort will proceed as a standalone campaign for people age 12 and over until December 31. WHO Zimbabwe; Bulawayo24

Somalia’s recent nationwide polio, measles, vitamin A and deworming campaign—held from November 12-16—reached 2.61 million children under age 5 with trivalent oral polio vaccine (tOPV), the first time the country has used tOPV in campaign mode after its switch to bOPV in 2016. The integrated drive also vaccinated 2.31 children ages 6 months-5 years against measles and administered vitamin A and deworming tablets to about 2 million children under age 5. During the drive—Somalia’s first national integrated campaign in three years—4,088 vaccination teams were deployed across the country to roll out, record, and report the campaign using an online digital platform. WHO Somalia

Local Campaigns

India’s Karnataka state held a vaccination drive against Japanese Encephalitis (JE) December 5-26, targeting 4.8 million children ages 1 to 15. The drive focused on schools during the first week and then expanded to health institutions, childcare centers and communities. The campaign will provide one dose of JE vaccine; in the state’s 10 endemic districts, a first dose is given to children age 9 months and a second at 18 months as part of the universal immunization program. To date, the state has recorded 21 cases of JE. Hindustan Times; Times of India

Botswana ran a nationwide mop-up vaccination campaign against polio December 12-16, using injectable vaccine to target children ages 4 months to 5 years who missed shots. The campaign is in response to a recent sample of cVDP2 detected in Gaborone, along with low national coverage of both the oral and injectable polio vaccines. Botswana Daily News

India’s Chhattisgarh state conducted an MDA in the filariasis-affected districts of Balodabazar-Bhatapara, Gariyaband, and Raipur December 12-18, aiming to reach all residents over age 2. Diethylcarbamazine/albendazole tablets were administered at fixed sites and door to door. Times of India

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