WHO dismisses Catholic fears over tetanus vaccine
14 November 2014, 08:17
Nairobi - The World Health Organization (WHO) Director of the Department of Reproductive Health and Research, Prof. Marleen Temmerman Thursday said that the tetanus vaccine is safe and does not contain Human Chorionic Gonadotropin (HCG) hormone.
Temmerman said the vaccination exercise in the country should go on as planned since a many children are dying of tetanus disease.
Her remarks came after the Catholic Health Commission of Kenya and the Catholic Doctors Association officially tabled the laboratory results to the Parliamentary Committee on Health on Tuesday indicating that the vaccine contained the HCG hormone.
She was speaking during the advocacy meeting for senators and MPs on accelerating the attainment of MDG 5 and advance Beyond Zero Campaign in Kenya at a Nairobi hotel.
Temmerman said WHO is still waiting for the fresh joint laboratory tests that will be done by the Catholic church and the Ministry of Health.
She also urged the government to provide more health resources in order to reduce maternal deaths in the country.
Speaking at the same event, Planning and Devolution Principal Secretary Peter Magiti said there is need for the Senate and the National Assembly to prioritize maternal health issues during the national planning and budgeting processes.
He announced that the two ministries will partner to accelerate the attainment of Millennium Development Goal (MDG) 5 and advance Beyond Zero Campaign to reduce maternal deaths in the country.
Also read: Government dismisses Catholic fears over tetanus vaccine
“These two ministries will offer skilled personnel to help operate the mobile clinics for the Beyond Zero campaign, our planning strategy will ensure that by 2035 there will be no maternal and new born deaths in the country,” he said.
MDG 5 aims at improving maternal health by reducing maternal mortality in the country and achieving universal access to reproductive health.
Globally, the maternal mortality ratio has declined by 47 per cent over the past twenty years, from 400 maternal deaths per 100,000 live births in 1990 to 210 in 2010.
According to the Kenya National Bureau of Statistics and ICF Macro, 2010, the maternal mortality ratio in Kenya remains at an unacceptably high level of 488 deaths per 100,000 live births. This ratio has almost remained constant since 1990.
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