Nigeria wins the battle against polio

How Germany, through KfW, helps eradicate wild polio infections

Happy Nigerian kids without polio

Today, July 24 2015 marks one year since the last reported case of wild polio in Nigeria, and on the African continent.  What a turnaround after the country had reached the peak of 1.122 wild polio cases in 2006. This is a significant milestone and could lead to the end of polio in Africa pending final laboratory classification from all samples expected by September. This progress is due to the coordinated efforts of donors, African governments, health workers, partners, religious and community leaders.

Since 2004 the German Federal Ministry of Economic Cooperation and Development through KfW has released EUR 96.5 million for the fight against polio in Nigeria on the basis of a close collaboration with the National Primary Healthcare Development Agency (NPHCDA), WHO and UNICEF. These funds were used for the procurement of vaccines as well as for the financing of special Polio immunization campaigns which are carried out by up to 300,000 - mainly temporarily recruited – local health workers in the Polio risk areas.

The timely and consistent execution of planned polio campaigns is still difficult in some areas due to the deterioration of the security situation. Against this background the German Financial Cooperation through KfW provided EUR 15 million, of which 5m are specifically committed to security measures in order to improve the working conditions of health workers in risk areas. Also, the Nigerian strategy has changed in the direction of integrating immunization activities into routine health services increasing the acceptance of such activities. There is good reason to be optimistic that Nigeria will contribute its essential part to the eradication of Polio in Africa.


July 2015

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