This Tuesday, November 30, in a hotel reception desk in Conakry, the Expanded Vaccination Program (EPI) submitted for validation through a workshop which brought together the actors of the health system in Guinea, two documents on the expansion of immunization in- beyond the first year of life.
The reflection around these two documents took a little over three months. They will serve, once adopted during this one-day workshop, as an orientation policy in health structures to allow vaccination in these structures throughout the life cycle.
“The objective of our meeting today is to validate an extremely important document for us. The document in question is called the vaccination platform in the second year of life. There is a second document called plan to introduce the second dose of vaccination against measles in the EPI systematically in the Republic of Guinea which must also be submitted for validation. You know, our program’s mission is to design and monitor the implementation of all aspects of vaccination policy and strategy in the Republic of Guinea, as well as primary health care. Until now, we vaccinated in the first year, but things have changed. With the WHO, there are new guidelines called lifecycle vaccination. Whether it is infancy, childhood to adulthood, today there are vaccines. The mission of the EPI is to evolve too. Since there are vaccines that are administered after the first year of life, there was a need for a guidance policy indicating the possibility of offering these immunization services after the first year of life. It is within this framework, with the support of partners, that we have drawn up a guidance document for providers at all levels. It is a very important document for us ”, supported Dr Moustapha Dabo, EPI coordinator.
The participants in this workshop come from all walks of life in the health sector, including the central administration of the Ministry of Health but also decentralized structures of the latter, other ministerial departments and also technical and financial partner structures. Their work will consist, essentially, in amending, proposing new ideas for improving the content of said documents before validating them.
According to the advisor to the Minister of Health who represented him at the opening ceremony, these two documents will make it possible, beyond their fundamentally reference role, to broaden the field of investigation of the ministry and its actors, to the great happiness of the populations, especially the rural ones.
“All this was born from an observation: it is that we have a vaccination coverage which is quite low, we have children whose vaccination program has started but unfortunately stopped along the way. The other observation is that the vaccination program stopped at the first year of life. All those who were therefore not concerned by the catch-up or had not completed their vaccination program were, if you will, left behind. Introducing this platform for the second year allows us to further expand our field of investigation, in order to catch up with children and give them the necessary weapons against diseases that are harmful ”, supported Dr Bachir Kanté, adviser to the Ministry of Health.
Speaking on behalf of CDC, Ms. Lise Martel magnified the importance of these documents for the EPI and specified that her organization, as a technical partner in this project, will continue to work alongside Guinea, for the well-being. populations.
“Our efforts have always been in the control of diseases with potential epidemics. We joined this second year of life initiative because we know that this initiative is very important to prevent epidemics, especially in small children. It is above all to allow them to have protection against diseases that are preventable by vaccination (…). Today’s workshop is necessary because it will make it possible to look at each of these documents, to analyze them well, to revise them, to propose changes. This will ensure that all the documents used for activities in the near future are well adapted to Guinean needs and reality ”, she clarified.
Mohamed Nana Bangoura