-Typhoid disease identified as a major public health concern in African and Asian countries.
– Access to clean water and proper hygiene have been advocated as means of overcoming the disease.
More help comes the way of typhoid affected regions of the world.
Nigeria’s former minister of finance, Ngozi Okonjo-Iweala, who is the current chair, board of Global Alliance for Vaccine and Immunisation (GAVI), has spoken out on how she almost lost her son to typhoid.
Unfortunately, according to her, she lost her cousin to the same disease.
She shared her personal experience in Vientiane, Laos, while announcing a new funding for typhoid conjugate vaccines.
“Typhoid fever imposes a dramatic burden on children in the poorest nations affecting countries, communities and families,” she said.
“This disease has long been eliminated from most industrialised nations, but it is still a serious threat in developing countries where the vast majority of deaths occur.
“I lost my cousin and nearly lost my son because of typhoid. This vaccine will be a lifesaver for millions of children, especially those living without access to clean water or sanitation.”
Adding his voice to the discourse, GAVI’s chief executive officer, Seth Berkley said drug-resistant typhoid cases is fast spreading in Africa and Asia thus posing a threat to public health.
“This vaccine is safe, effective and can provide lasting protection. The growing spread of drug resistant strains of typhoid is a major threat, not just to individuals but also to our efforts to control the disease. And this requires us to prioritise prevention strategies,” he said.
“Strong coverage through routine immunisation together with efforts to improve access to clean water and hygiene will play a key role in dramatically reducing the disease.”