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이라크 소아마비 예방접종 캠페인 - 백신 한방울의 희망

2007.10.10

* UNICEF: National polio drive delivers drops of hope amid insecurity in Iraq
* 02 Oct 2007

Knocking on doors…

The tedium of going house to house… to house.

And all this in the city of Baghdad, where violence has displaced many families and neighbourhoods are still unstable.

Still, Iraq’s national polio immunization days are underway, aiming to bring protection to all Iraqi children through a massive house-to-house drive all over the country.

Just two drops of oral vaccine is all it takes… and these children are protected against a crippling disease.

With nearly five million children in need of the vaccine, it’s taking 20,000 mobile vaccinators to spread out in this titanic effort to reach children no matter where they live – cities, rural areas, conflict zones or camps.

SOUNDBITE, Dr. Buthaina Abdul Ahad, Doctor, Karrada Primary Health Care centre: “The current campaign is being coordinated by the Ministry of Health and UNICEF to combat polio, dangerous a disease that leaves children with a lifelong disability, all mothers are called to vaccinate their children up to 5 years to spare them the bad consequences of polio.”

Many Iraqis are able to bring their children to fixed vaccination teams stationed at health centres, but many are afraid to leave their homes. UNICEF has provided transport for many vaccinator teams in an effort to improve their security, as well as special vaccine carriers to protect the vials.

SOUNDBITE: Father of immunized child: “The campaign is going very well, everything is well organized. God bless the vaccinators, they are doing their very best to achieve the protection of children.”

Since 2006, more than 1 million Iraqis have been forced to flee their homes, an added difficulty for vaccinators… And working in central Iraq, where violence and suspicion are at their most intense, they risk their lives to knock on these doors…

But with this important campaign, the risk is necessary, amid concerns that in these times, children could become harder and harder to reach, and more vulnerable than ever.


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