244 Views

Immunization In Nigeria – Problems And Possible Solution

Immunization is the process whereby a person is made immune or resistant to an infectious disease, typically by the administration of a vaccine.

A vaccine is a biological preparation that provides active acquired immunity to a particular disease. A vaccine typically contains an agent that resembles a disease-causing microorganism and is often made from weakened or killed forms of the microbe, its toxins, or one of its surface proteins . Vaccines help to stimulate the immune system of a person in order to protect them from reoccurring infections and diseases.

The presence of vaccines in the body introduces the immune system to the bacteria or virus weakened microbes, the body then produces antibodies to fight the weakened microbes and suppresses its effect, this helps make the immune system become stronger whereby it cannot be taken by surprise when the body comes in contact with the virus or bacteria as time goes on.

The importance of immunization to a child cannot be overemphasized, it has served as proven tools used to control and eliminate life-threatening diseases such as measles, polio, and yellow-fever e.t.c

Incorrect knowledge as to the preventive role of routine immunization is widespread in Nigeria. However, though immunization is key to a healthier childhood, there are still problems faced with immunization in Nigeria, they are stated below.

Inaccurate Knowledge about the Function of Immunization
Misconception of immunization as to their preventive function poses a serious problem in Nigeria. A research conducted in six states in Nigeria in 2004 explains that some diseases that cannot be vaccinated against, such as cholera, malaria, epilepsy are believed by the locals that vaccination cures these kinds of diseases.

In March 2005, Katsina state, immunization nurses and organizers concluded that only polio immunization is more than enough to protect a child from all childhood diseases even those diseases which there are no vaccinations to.

The most people who are likely to have this false knowledge include illiterates, and those who do not have access to effective and well-informed health officials and facilities.

Inadequate Storage Facility
The unavailability of effective storage facility is also a major problem of immunization in Nigeria. The cold chain has become quite ineffective and has been unable to be repaired, despite the fact that Nigeria has received large quantities of this equipment.

In some states in Nigeria, cold chain equipments are poorly stored or handled. Also, during the transportation of these vaccines from one place to another, some have been mishandled or improperly stored and has thereby reduced the potency of the vaccines which in turn can seriously affect a child’s health thereby confirming the fear of the locals that immunization kills children rather than protect them.

Religion
In some parts of the northern states, immunization is considered a sin against their belief. Muslim states have very little immunization coverage and the lowest on the list are the north-west states. Influence of religion. In Nigeria, the greatest challenge to the acceptance of immunization is a religious one especially among the northern Nigerian Muslims. Generally, the Muslim north has the low immunization coverage, the least being 6%(northwest) and the highest being 44.6% (southeast).

However, in the south, eastern and western states in Nigeria, there is a higher level of awareness about immunization but this is only restricted to the Christian areas as the Muslims in the west have even lower immunization coverage due their religious beliefs and poor education.

Political Problems
In Nigeria, there are several policies that affect the health sector. The poor coverage of immunization in the northern states can be traced to the inadequacy and ineffectiveness of the government officials to provide enough vaccines and immunization facilities to the locals. These political problems included low government commitment to ensure the fulfilment of EPI policy as well as over-centralization in the administration of EPI at the federal level of governance in Nigeria

At the state levels, there have been cases of frequent reshuffling of civil servant staffs and sometimes unqualified staffs are appointed to take over responsibilities meant to be handled by experts. These governmental policies do play a critical role that contributes to the problems of immunization in Nigeria.

ALSO READ  Nigeria's First Ever Electric Powered Light Train Ready for Inauguration in Calabar

Negative Beliefs
One of the major problems facing immunization in Nigeria is the negative belief held by some religious individuals and some parents. A lot of people reject immunization because of the stories they hear from false rumors and incorrect facts.

The Muslims belief that immunization is an undercover plan instigated by the westerners to reduce the Muslim population, with this negative belief it becomes almost impossible for immunization to cover most part of the northern states such as Jigawa, Kano and Yobe states. This sort of negative understanding has resulted to a high deficiency of immunization coverage in the north.

Inadequate Facilities, Supplies and Vaccines
The main duty of the federal government is to provide the facilities needed to state and local government to carry a successful immunization program, apparently that hasn’t been the case so far, as the government has proven to be highly incompetent and disorganized in this department and as well other sectors of the Nigerian economy.The supply of vaccines has always been problematic for Nigeria, primarily because funds were not sufficient and were not released on time

There have been cases of withheld funds, according to a research in 2002, the government did not give up any financial assistant to the health sector and in March 2003, the government had just only made it a budget that had not yet been approved.

The inability of the government to supply vaccines on time can lead to an outbreak of diseases and apparently this happens mostly in the north and a very few parts in the east and this I can say, is the core cause of the problems of immunization in Nigeria.

Negative Attitudes
The negative responses, attitude and behavior of the nurses also contribute to one of the problems of immunization in Nigeria. Some mothers have complained about the rudeness of the nurses and it has been one of the major reasons why immunization has not been taken very serious by these mothers.

Also the nurses’ negative attitude towards work exhibited in their lateness to work has caused some mother to wait for an overbearing period of time thereby losing out on their pre-planned schedule especially for those mothers with a busy schedules and even at that, these nurses rarely or never apologize for their lateness or bad attitude.

Some mothers have also complained about the nurses’ rudeness to them when they arrive late, even sometimes they override the “first-come-first-serve” rule and begin with those they are more familiar with, thereby ignoring those that came around first.

These bad attitudes exhibited by the nurses have caused a gradual reduction in the population of women who would come around to get their child immunized.

Health of the Child
Sometimes the health of the child can be posing as a huge barrier that faces immunization in Nigeria. In a situation where a child is malnourished and sick, it becomes almost impossible to get such a child immunized especially when the child even becomes sick on the day he/she is supposed to get immunized.

Unavailability of Parents
The unavailability of a mother can disrupt the immunization process. The failure of a parent to present the child for immunization on the appointed day is also problem that faces immunization in Nigeria, this usually happens when such a parent is crippled with the fear that the vaccines provided are not safe enough for their child.

The long waiting hours and inconvenient immunization hours also discourages most women from bringing their child in for immunization.

These problems can be sorted when the government decides to take the girdle of their responsibility a lot more serious and becomes effective about it. The release of funds should be done early enough to avoid outbreak of diseases and immunizations facilities should be provided and well-managed by competent and polite experts/staffs. Carrying out a mass campaign in the rural areas to educate the locals about the importance of immunization and its functions in the human body can help reduce the effects of the immunization barriers.

Get the best viral stories straight into your inbox!

Don't worry, we don't spam

Leave a Comment

Your email address will not be published.

This site uses Akismet to reduce spam. Learn how your comment data is processed.

Latest Posts

Nigerian Govt Evacuates 230 Stranded Nigerians In Russia
Politics
7 views
Politics
7 views

Nigerian Govt Evacuates 230 Stranded Nigerians In Russia

PH - July 20, 2018

The Ministry of Foreign Affairs has said that Nigerians stranded in Moscow, Russia at the end of the 2018 World Cup Tournament would be evacuated today. The…

Okonjo-Iweala Appointed Into Twitter Board
Politics
16 views
Politics
16 views

Okonjo-Iweala Appointed Into Twitter Board

PH - July 20, 2018

A former Nigerian Minister of Finance, Ngozi Okonjo-Iweala, has been appointed into the board of social media giant, Twitter Inc. Mrs Okonjo-Iweala, who served in the administration…

Drama As Baby Boy Is Found Under Trailer In Kaduna State
Shocking
11 views
Shocking
11 views

Drama As Baby Boy Is Found Under Trailer In Kaduna State

PH - July 20, 2018

A three-month-old baby boy, whose mother, Aisha Yau attempted to kill, has been rescued by the Kaduna State government. Kaduna State Commissioner for Women Affairs and Social…

Benue Gov. Ortom Cries Out Over Alleged Plans To Attack Him
Politics
13 views
Politics
13 views

Benue Gov. Ortom Cries Out Over Alleged Plans To Attack Him

PH - July 20, 2018

Benue State Governor, Samuel Ortom has cried out over alleged plan by some persons to attack him. The governor said there were underground plans by his political…

Dino Melaye Confirms Assasination Attempt, Indicts Police, Military
Politics
16 views
Politics
16 views

Dino Melaye Confirms Assasination Attempt, Indicts Police, Military

PH - July 20, 2018

Senator representing Kogi West District in the National Assembly, Dino Melaye, has spoken on the alleged assassination attempt on his life on Thursday. The Senator had arrived…

Ngozi Okonjo-Iweala Appointed Into Twitter Board
Best of Nigeria
12 views
Best of Nigeria
12 views

Ngozi Okonjo-Iweala Appointed Into Twitter Board

PH - July 20, 2018

Social media giant Twitter Inc has announced the appointments of Nigeria’s former Minister of finance Ngozi Okonjo-Iweala to its board. Okonjo-Iweala was appointed alongside Robert Zoellick as…

American Universities Award $5.3m Scholarships To 110 Nigerian Students
Best of Nigeria
14 views
Best of Nigeria
14 views

American Universities Award $5.3m Scholarships To 110 Nigerian Students

PH - July 20, 2018

The U.S. Embassy in Abuja says over 110 Nigerian students have been awarded scholarships worth $5.3m (about N2bn) by more than 15 leading American universities, starting in…

Alibaba On Throwing Away A Good Man, Says ‘All You Need Is Understanding’
Entertainment
47 views
Entertainment
47 views

Alibaba On Throwing Away A Good Man, Says ‘All You Need Is Understanding’

MT - July 19, 2018

Veteran Nigerian comedian Alibaba, who is known for his regular nuggets on relationship issues, has just dropped another one for his fans and followers. In his latest…

8 Health Benefits of Dark Chocolate Every Woman Should Know
Food and Health
45 views
Food and Health
45 views

8 Health Benefits of Dark Chocolate Every Woman Should Know

MT - July 19, 2018

Everyone loves to eat chocolate but many think of unhealthy amounts of sugar, fat and poor diet at the mere thought of chocolate and this is not…

This Is The Cute Way Laura Ikeji Is Celebrating Her Son’s First Birthday
Best of Nigeria
41 views
Best of Nigeria
41 views

This Is The Cute Way Laura Ikeji Is Celebrating Her Son’s First Birthday

MT - July 19, 2018

Instagram brand influencer, Laura Ikeji has many reasons to be thankful as her son, Ryan celebrates his first birthday today. Laura took to Instagram to pen this…

Revealed: How FG Agency Spent N5.7bn On DSTV Subscription, Fuel Allowance – NSITF
Politics
39 views
Politics
39 views

Revealed: How FG Agency Spent N5.7bn On DSTV Subscription, Fuel Allowance – NSITF

MT - July 19, 2018

A report by the administrative panel of enquiry set up by the minister of labour and employment has shown that staff of the Nigeria Social Insurance Trust…

Governor Ortom Reveals He’s Still In APC Despite Secret Talks With PDP Leaders
Politics
44 views
Politics
44 views

Governor Ortom Reveals He’s Still In APC Despite Secret Talks With PDP Leaders

MT - July 19, 2018

Samuel Ortom, governor of Benue state, says efforts are in place to resolve the issues he has with the All Progressives Congress (APC). Ortom said this less…

Why EFCC, ICPC, Others Should Go After Governor Wike – APC
Politics
41 views
Politics
41 views

Why EFCC, ICPC, Others Should Go After Governor Wike – APC

PH - July 19, 2018

The All Progressives Congress, APC, in Rivers State has accused the Governor of the State, Nyesom Wike, of allegedly acquiring personal belongings with the State’s funds. The…

Comprehensive List of USSD Codes of All the Commercial Banks in Nigeria (Full List)
Best of Nigeria
62 views
Best of Nigeria
62 views

Comprehensive List of USSD Codes of All the Commercial Banks in Nigeria (Full List)

MT - July 19, 2018

#MobileBanking #FinancialLiteracy #FinancialInclusion #Banking In case you didn’t know Here is the comprehensive list of the USSD codes of all the licensed commercial banks operating in Nigeria:…

How FG Curtailed IPOB And Niger Delta Militants – VP Osinbajo
Politics
46 views
Politics
46 views

How FG Curtailed IPOB And Niger Delta Militants – VP Osinbajo

PH - July 19, 2018

Vice President, Yemi Osinbajo has said that the intervention by traditional rulers helped curtail the bombing of oil installations by the Niger Delta militants and the secessionist…

Chimamanda Adichie, Nnedi Okorafor, Ngũgĩ wa Thiong’o Nominated For Alternative Nobel Prize for Literature Award
Best of Nigeria
73 views
Best of Nigeria
73 views

Chimamanda Adichie, Nnedi Okorafor, Ngũgĩ wa Thiong’o Nominated For Alternative Nobel Prize for Literature Award

PH - July 19, 2018

Ngũgĩ wa Thiong’o, Chimamanda Adichie and Nnedi Okorafor are the 3 African writers nominated for an alternative Nobel Prize for Literature alternative prize award. Following the shocking…

Meet Osun APC Governorship Aspirants Participating in Tomorrow’s Primary
Politics
61 views
Politics
61 views

Meet Osun APC Governorship Aspirants Participating in Tomorrow’s Primary

MT - July 19, 2018

Less than twenty hours to the primary election of the All Progressives Congress in Osun state, September 22 governorship aspirants are making last minutes preparations to clinch…

10-Year-Old Author Launches Two Books titled Concealed and Chidubem
Featured
55 views
Featured
55 views

10-Year-Old Author Launches Two Books titled Concealed and Chidubem

PH - July 19, 2018

Family, friends and well-wishers gathered Sunday at the Terra Kulture, Victoria Island, Lagos to launch two books written by 10-year old Munachi Mbonu. The books, Concealed and…

Loading...