Massive anthrax vaccination underway in five regions

Massive anthrax vaccination underway in five regions

Ms Kimberly Rosen(right) presenting the vaccines to vertinary officials

 About one million animals across the five regions in the Northern part of the country are receiving anthrax vaccination.

The United States (U.S) Gov­ernment, through the U.S Agency for International Development (USAID), donated 100,000 doses of the vaccine to support gov­ernment’s anthrax vaccination campaigns across the country.

The intervention is expected to build immunity of mostly live­stock against the infection and prevent possible spread to other animals and humans.

Launching the campaign at Savelugu in the Northern Region, the USAID/Ghana Mission Director, Ms. Kimberly Rosen, said anthrax has a high transmission risk to humans which is why vaccination must be prioritised.

“Anthrax does not only threat­en human life; when it destroys livestock, it also threatens economic prosperity and food security.”

In May 2023, Ghana experi­enced an outbreak of anthrax, affecting six districts in the Upper East Region. A total of 97 animals died from the outbreak. Thirteen suspected human anthrax cases were also detected, with one death recorded.

Dr Emmanuel Cudjoe, Chief Veterinary Officer, in a speech read on his behalf, said the vac­cination was crucial to safeguard the health and well-being of the nation’s livestock and communi­ties.

“Anthrax is a deadly disease that not only poses a grave risk to the health of our animals but also threatens the livelihoods of our farmers and the safety of our food supply. But today, we stand united in our resolve to confront this threat head-on.”

Anthrax is a serious, potential­ly life-threatening infectious dis­ease that is passed from animals to humans.

To prevent future outbreaks, yearly animal vaccination is rec­ommended, hence the launch of the campaign.

 By Abigail Annoh

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