Health minister launches polio vaccines program

"The immunization program should cover the entire nation," the minister said.
Gianyar, Bali (ANTARA News) - The Minister of Health, Nila F. Moeloek, has launched the Inactivated Polio Vaccine (IPV) for primary immunization of infants in Gianyar, Bali Friday.

Immunization is a health program that effectively supports national development, the minister said.

"The immunization program should cover the entire nation," the minister said, adding that globally, immunization can reduce infant mortality rate by up to three million per year due to diseases.

Indonesia has been certified free of polio from the World Health Organization (WHO) in April 2014.

The government has succeeded in conducting the national immunization week simultaneously across the nation in March 2016. The coverage has been around 95.6 percent, the minister said.

Twenty years ago, polio paralyzed nearly 1,000 children every day throughout the world.

In 1988, the Global Polio Eradication Movement emerged. Then in 2004, only 1,266 cases of polio were reported worldwide.

Polio is a virus spread through fecal matter that affects the central nervous system and can leave victims with withered limbs, and can cause paralysis or even death.

There is no cure, but it can be prevented through mass vaccination programmes, which target children under five.(*)