July 15, 2006

Biggest ever child immunisation campaign launched

In a step towards rebuilding a healthcare system devastated by 27 years of civil war,
government as well as international aid agencies have launched the biggest ever child immunisation campaign. Angola's under-five mortality rate is over 50 percent, one of the highest in the world. The campaign, aimed at the country's 3.6 million children, would vaccinate against measles and polio, provide vitamin A supplements and de-worming medicines. With malaria, the largest single killer of children in Angola, insecticide-treated mosquito nets would also be distributed in all seven malaria-prone provinces.

The programme, Viva a Vida com Sa˙de (Enjoy a healthy life), is being implemented under a four-year government plan that aims to reduce the child mortality rate to below 50 percent. Also supporting the US$15 million programme are the World Health Organization, the Global Fund to Fight Malaria, Tuberculosis and HIV/AIDS, western donors, and 23.000 Angolan health workers and volunteers. (Rts)

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