MoH boosts local vaccination rate for diphtheria
15:21 | 09/07/2020

VGP – The Ministry of Health (MoH) has recently issued the largest-scale plan on diphtheria vaccination in four provinces in the Central Highlands namely Dak Lak, Gia Lai, Kon Tum and Dac Nong in a bid to rein in new cases of diphtheria.

The vaccination campaign will be deployed from July, targetting to vaccinate 4.7 million people from above 2 months in the Central Highlands Region. 

The MoH and the Gia Lai People’s Committee jointly hosted the campaign on diphtheria prevention in the four provinces on July 9 in Dak Doa town, Gia Lai province. 

As scheduled, the campaign will use 120,446 doses of 5-in-1 combined vaccine, 279,608 doses of DPT vaccine and over 10 million doses of Td. Hence, 4.7 million people in the four provinces will be vaccinated against diphtheria.

Addressing the launching of the campaign, Acting Minister of Health Nguyen Thanh Long said that Viet Nam has attained encouraging achievements in the fight against Covid-19 in which the country has gone 83 days without any new community infection cases. However, the health sector will not neglect other infectious diseases. 

Earlier, on July 8, PM Nguyen Xuan Phuc asked for stronger measures against diphtheria which is spreading fast and widely in Viet Nam’s Central Highlands region. 

Statistics showed that as of July 8, the Central Highlands Region confirmed 68 cases of diphtheria including 27 cases in Dak Nong, 16 cases in Gia Lai; 24 cases in Kon Tum; and one in Dak Lak. Especially, three fatalities were announced. 

With the local vaccination rate for diphtheria at only 48-50%, the Central Highlands remains susceptible to repeated outbreaks.

Diphtheria has been absent in northern Viet Nam over the years thanks to the expanded program on immunization. The disease has not been eliminated in Viet Nam, and sometimes still appears in remote areas of the nation, especially in the Central Highlands.

For the past five years, provinces in the region have repeatedly reported cases of diphtheria and related fatalities./.

By Khanh Phuong 

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