Kenya has vaccinated nearly 1.9 million children in the first phase of its polio campaign, surpassing its target, the World Health Organization (WHO) said Wednesday.
The five-day polio campaign was held in the capital of Nairobi, the neighboring Kiambu and Kajiado counties, as well as Garissa in the northeast region and targeted 1.8 million children.
“About a million children were vaccinated in Nairobi, 287,000 in Garissa, 240,000 in Kajiado and over 334,000 in Kiambu,” the WHO, which carried out the campaign in collaboration with Kenya’s Ministry of Health, said in a statement issued in Nairobi.
“The drive involved hundreds of health workers moving from house to house and some in harsh conditions. Most parents availed their children,” the WHO said.
Kenya launched the vaccination campaign targeting children under five years of age following an outbreak of the disease in Garissa County.
According to the WHO, Kenya, with other countries in the Horn of Africa, remains at risk of imported wild poliovirus from neighboring Somalia.
Polio is a debilitating and incurable disease that predominantly affects children below the age of seven.
The WHO said the second and third rounds of the polio vaccination would be carried out in September and October in Kenya.