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|University in Lebanon, Lebanon
Ministry of Public Health, Lebanon
|ScientificTracks Abstracts: J Vaccines Vaccin|
|Introduction & Aim: With the high proportion of refugee population throughout Lebanon and continuous population movement, it is sensible to believe that, in particular vulnerable areas, vaccination coverage may not be at an optimal level. Therefore, we assessed the vaccination coverage in children under 5 in a district of the Akkar Governorate before and after a vaccination campaign. During the vaccination campaign, conducted in August 2015, 2,509 children were vaccinated. Materials & Methods: We conducted a pre- and post-vaccination campaign coverage surveys adapting the WHO EPI cluster survey to the Lebanese MoPH vaccination calendar. Percentages of coverage for each dose of each vaccine were calculated for both surveys. Factors associated with complete vaccination were explored. Results: Comparing the pre- with the post-campaign surveys, coverage for polio vaccine increased from 51.9% to 84.3%, for pentavalent vaccines from 49.0% to 71.9%, for MMR from 36.2% to 61.0%, while the percentage of children with fully updated vaccination calendar increased from 32.9% to 53.8%. While Lebanese children were found to be better covered for some antigens compared to Syrians at the first survey, this difference disappeared at the post-campaign survey. Awareness and logistic obstacles were the primary reported causes of not complete vaccination in both surveys. Discussion: Vaccination campaigns remain a quick and effective approach to increase vaccination coverage in crisis-affected areas. However, campaigns cannot be considered as a replacement of routine vaccination services to maintain a good level of coverage.|
Randa Hamadeh is the Head of the Primary Health Care department, and the Manager of Immunization and Essential Drugs Program at the Lebanese Ministry of Public Health. She was promoted in April 2015 to be the Chief of the Social Health department. She contributed in creating a PHC network in Lebanon through which preventive programs and community health initiatives could be initiated, usually involving local municipalities and NGOs. She has also contributed to the introduction of the PHC facility accreditation program in Lebanon in 2008, and is the Vice Chair of the National Accreditation Committee. She has actively participated in the foundation of various NGOs. She is the author of many public health papers and booklets. She holds an MPH degree, a PhD in Public Health and a Vaccinology Diploma and is currently a Senior Lecturer in the faculty of Health Sciences at the Antonine University in Lebanon.
Email: [email protected]
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