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UPDF hailed for supporting immunisation campaign

By Chris Kiwawulo

Added 22nd October 2019 05:11 PM

The UPDF medics were seen administering vaccines alongside health ministry health workers during the immunisation exercise against measles, rubella, and polio in Pader and Lira districts.

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A UPDF medical officer v (Photos: Courtesy of UPDF)

The UPDF medics were seen administering vaccines alongside health ministry health workers during the immunisation exercise against measles, rubella, and polio in Pader and Lira districts.

MASS IMMUNISATION

Lira District Health Officer, Buchan Ochen, has commended Uganda Peoples' Defence Forces (UPDF) medical team for joining the immunisation campaign in risky areas in northern Uganda.

Ochen said the UPDF medical teams joined the health ministry health workers in mobilising the community and dispensing of the immunisation vaccines to the children.

The UPDF medics were seen administering vaccines alongside health ministry health workers during the immunisation exercise against measles, rubella, and polio in Pader and Lira districts.

“We thank the UPDF for accepting our call for help in this noble cause. The soldiers have boosted our manpower,” Ochen was quoted as saying in a statement issued by the UPDF deputy spokesperson, Lt. Col. Deo Akiiki. According to Ochen, the mobilization resulted into a high turn-up.

On Sunday, the UPDF also helped the health ministry to airlift additional vaccines from the National Medical Stores to five districts of; Gulu, Kiryandongo, Masaka, Mbarara, and Soroti, following stock-outs of vaccines there. The exercise was slated to end on Sunday, but the health ministry extended it to today.

According to Brig. Stephen Mugerwa, the UPDF’s 5th Division Commander, the 1981 liberation struggle was not just about saving Ugandans from bad governance, but it also had a wide agenda which included liberating Uganda from all kinds of undesirable conditions including poor health.

 

"Measles and rubella are dangerous diseases and can kill toddlers. I, therefore, urge all comrades and our civilian counterparts to take their children for immunisation for a better healthy living and growth,” Mugerwa emphasised.

The 5th Division Medical Health Officer, Capt. Dr. Ivan Ndikuno, welcomed the move, adding that a healthy population is crucial to national security and development.

"It is one of our constitutional roles as UPDF to support the civilian authority during such activities. We dispatched our medical personnel to work jointly with the District Health Medical teams to ensure that the exercise benefits all the children below 15 years,” said Ndikuno.

Warrant Officer II Samuel Alal, the in-charge of Lira barracks health center III, rallied UPDF families and the civil community well in advance making a landmark turn up in Lira town.

The primary goal of measles , rubella vaccination is to prevent measles and congenital rubella infection, including congenital syndrome in children from nine years and those below 15 years.

The UPDF team immunised children of St. Gracious Nursery and Primary school, Lira Army Nursery and Primary school and St. Stephen Nursery School. The UPDF team continued to Erute Prisons and helped immunise the children of Erute community.

The Mass Regional immunisation exercise was launched on October 16, 2019, at St. Gracious Nursery and Primary School in Lira town and was presided over by the Lira Resident District Commissioner, Milton Odong.                                         

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