52,000 displaced S. Sudanese received cholera vaccine

By Okech Francis, Wednesday, March 19, 2014

MSF said another round of immunisation is due in April for meningitis targeting 40,000 people between the age of one and thirty

MSF said another round of immunisation is due in April for meningitis targeting 40,000 people between the age of one and thirty

JUBA – The French-founded Doctors without Borders announced on Wednesday that they had offered cholera vaccination for 52,000 people in South Sudan's internally displaced people (IDPs) camps before the start of the rainy season.

"MSF has vaccinated 52,000 people in one week during the just completed first round of cholera vaccination," the group said in a statement.

It added that the immunisation was done in collaboration with South Sudan's Health Ministry and with the assistance of the World Health Organisation and UNICEF.

The humanitarian-aid group hoped the immunisation would help in curbing cholera infections during the rainy season.

"With the start of the rainy season in South Sudan and the growing number of displaced people, preventative cholera vaccination will further prevent a full outbreak," it said.

"Vaccinating against cholera cannot be used alone, and it remains essential to improve hygiene and sanitation conditions," added the group.

MSF said another round of immunisation is due in April for meningitis targeting 40,000 people between the age of one and thirty.

"Additionally, another 10,000 people living on the islands by the River Nile will receive cholera, meningitis and measles vaccinations," it added.

South Sudan has been shaken by violence since last December, when President Salva Kiir accused Machar of standing behind a failed coup attempt against his regime.

The violence has already claimed more than 10,000 lives.

The UN estimates that some 3.7 million South Sudanese are now "severely food insecure," while more than 867,000 have been displaced by the fighting.

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