The Federal Capital Massive Polio Vaccination Territory Administration (FCTA), through the FCT Primary Health Care Board (PHCB), has announced its aim to vaccinate approximately 1,275,417 children aged zero to 59 months against the white polio virus in the territory.\r\n\r\nREAD: \u201cMysterious Dog Respiratory Illness Strikes Nationwide: Uncovering the Deadly Cause and Urgent Prevention Tips!\u201d\r\n\r\nDr. Yakubu Mohammed, the Acting Executive Secretary of the board, disclosed this information during a press briefing in Abuja over the weekend, in preparation for a 5-day Integrated National Immunization Plus Days (NIPDS), Optimised Maternal Newborn and Child Health Week (MNCHW), and Active Case Search (ACS) in the FCT.\r\nMassive Polio Vaccination\r\nDr. Mohammed revealed that the Massive Polio Vaccination effort would also target a total of 1,720,462 women, including 1,401,858 women of child-bearing age (15 to 45 years) and 318,604 pregnant women. The national immunization initiative will be conducted across 33 states in the country and the FCT, commencing on Saturday, November 18, 2023.\r\n\r\nDespite Nigeria being declared free from the white polio virus in August 2020, Massive Polio Vaccination Dr. Mohammed emphasized the need to sustain this status by reaching the target population of children aged zero to 59 months with potent oral vaccines. He highlighted the presence of detected cases of variant type 2 of the virus, which could mutate and potentially lead to a white polio virus outbreak.\r\n\r\nThe Acting Executive Secretary underscored the urgency of the exercise, citing the resurgence of the virus in some African countries like Mozambique and Malawi, previously declared free from white polio virus.\r\n\r\nDr. Mohammed attributed recurring cases of white polio virus in Nigeria to poor environmental sanitation and open defecation. He urged residents to maintain a clean environment and avoid open defecation to prevent poliomyelitis, as the mode of transmission is fecal-oral.\r\n\r\nRegarding the MNCH Week, which dates back to 2010, Dr. Mohammed explained that it involves a biannual intervention providing high-impact health services to children under 59 months and pregnant women. Massive Polio Vaccination The intervention includes vitamin A supplementation, deworming, oral rehydration, essential medicines, insecticide-treated mosquito nets, iron-folic tablets for pregnant women, HIV testing and counseling, and family planning services.\r\n\r\nThe delivery of these services will take place through the FCT's health facilities, including over 257 Primary Health Care facilities, 14 Secondary Health Care facilities under the FCTA, and additional facilities owned by other Ministries, Departments, and Agencies, as well as tertiary health care facilities. Massive Polio Vaccination Outreach teams will also visit communities, schools, markets, village squares, and various centers to provide services to the target population, with ongoing sensitization efforts to inform the public about the initiative.