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Vaccination campaigns rolled out to ward off three epidemics in Niger

Vaccination campaigns rolled out to ward off three epidemics in Niger

Niger

Aid agency Medecins Sans Frontieres (MSF)/ Doctors Without Borders has rolled out a vaccination campaign to respond to meningitis, measles and cholera in Niger.

The aid agency said it had deployed teams to ward off the simultaneous epidemics which had mostly affected areas
sheltering large numbers of refugees and people displaced from their homes by violence in the region.

Up to 1,409 cases of meningitis had been recorded since January and which had resulted in 94 deaths, MSF said.

In the struggle to prevent the epidemics from spreading, our current priority is to administer vaccinations in areas where displaced people are coming into contact with the local population.

An outbreak of measles in mid-March had also affected 1,921 people so far this year and caused 5 deaths, MSF added.

The aid agency said it is currently working alongside Niger’s health authorities and had vaccinated some 254,000 people against meningitis in a campaign which ended in April.

“In the struggle to prevent the epidemics from spreading, our current priority is to administer vaccinations in areas where displaced people are coming into contact with the local population,” said MSF emergency coordinator Augustin Ngoyi.

MSF said it had deployed a team in the Diffa region, in the east of the country, to contain an epidemic of measles where some 240,000 people are sheltering after being displaced by violence linked to Boko Haram.