News

    US, Haiti Launch Vaccination Campaign

    U.S. Secretary of Health and Human Services Kathleen Sebelius, center, talks to a health worker during a visit to Eliazar Germain hospital in Port-au-Prince, Haiti, April 16, 2012.
    U.S. Secretary of Health and Human Services Kathleen Sebelius, center, talks to a health worker during a visit to Eliazar Germain hospital in Port-au-Prince, Haiti, April 16, 2012.
    Carol Pearson

    An ambitious campaign is under way in Haiti to provide the same protection against deadly childhood diseases that children in developed countries enjoy. U.S. Secretary of Health and Human Services Secretary Kathleen Sebelius, along with the director of the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention and international providers, helped the Haitian government launch this program.

    CDC head, Dr. Thomas Frieden called the program a major step forward. He said the U.S. government worked with Haiti on health issues before that country's deadly 2010 earthquake, but that after a cholera epidemic erupted several months later, efforts were stepped up. A vaccination program to prevent cholera is already under way. And now, another campaign has started, with the goal of protecting infants and children under the age of five from deadly childhood diseases, including measles.

    Dr. Frieden said although measles does not exist in Haiti now, health officials have seen a recent increase in outbreaks. They are concerned because travelers may introduce measles, which is highly infectious.   

    "The country is certainly at risk for measles so one major effort is to improve measles immunity to protect children in Haiti," he explained.

    Another part of the program is a pentavalent vaccine - one that protects against five childhood diseases: diphtheria, pertussis, tetanus, hepatitis B and the bacterial illness haemophilus influenza Type B (known as Hib).

    "Currently, Haiti only vaccinates against three of those diseases," noted the doctor. "So for the first time, Haiti will be vaccinating against five childhood diseases. And that will prevent literally thousands of deaths in the months and years to come."

    Dr. Frieden said other vaccines to protect against pneumonia and diarrheal diseases will soon be introduced as part of this effort. In addition to being "the right thing to do," he said it is also personally gratifying.   

    "It's very exciting and very encouraging to see life-saving vaccines being delivered in slums and rural areas in Haiti," he said. "And those vaccines are going to protect literally tens of thousands of children from getting very sick and tens of thousands of children from dying in the years to come."  

    Until this campaign started, the vaccination rate for children in Haiti was below 60 percent. Dr. Frieden said that the CDC is helping the country improve its routine vaccination program so children born in the years to come will have a greater chance to become healthy adults.

    This forum has been closed.
    Comment Sorting
    Comments
         
    by: Henry
    April 18, 2012 7:42 AM
    Haiti the 51st state of the Union

    Featured Videos

    Your JavaScript is turned off or you have an old version of Adobe's Flash Player. Get the latest Flash player.
    Tech Startups Showcase Wares at Amsterdam Conferencei
    X
    Serginho Roosblad
    May 30, 2016 5:11 PM
    More than 20,000 tech enthusiasts, entrepreneurs and lovers of digital technology came together in Amsterdam recently at the Next Web Conference to discuss the latest developments in digital technology, look to the future and, of course, to connect. In recent years, there has been an explosion of so-called startup businesses that have created devices and applications that have changed the way we live; but, as Serginho Roosblad reports for VOA, there are pitfalls for such startups as well.
    Video

    Video Tech Startups Showcase Wares at Amsterdam Conference

    More than 20,000 tech enthusiasts, entrepreneurs and lovers of digital technology came together in Amsterdam recently at the Next Web Conference to discuss the latest developments in digital technology, look to the future and, of course, to connect. In recent years, there has been an explosion of so-called startup businesses that have created devices and applications that have changed the way we live; but, as Serginho Roosblad reports for VOA, there are pitfalls for such startups as well.
    Video

    Video US Military's Fallen Honored With Flags

    Memorial Day is a long weekend for most Americans. For some, it is the unofficial start of summer -- local swimming pools open and outdoor grilling season begins. But Memorial Day remains true to its origins -- a day to remember the U.S. military's fallen.
    Video

    Video Rolling Thunder Rolls Into Washington

    The Rolling Thunder caravan of motorcycles rolled into Washington Sunday, to support the U.S. military on the country's Memorial Day weekend
    Video

    Video A New Reading Program Pairs Kids with Dogs

    Dogs, it is said, are man's best friend. What some researchers have discovered is that they can also be a friend to a struggling reader. A group called Intermountain Therapy Animals trains dogs to help all kinds of kids with reading problems — from those with special needs to those for whom English is a second language. Faiza Elmasry has more on the New York chapter of R.E.A.D., or Reading Education Assistance Dogs, in this piece narrated by Faith Lapidus.
    Video

    Video Fan Base Grows for Fictional Wyoming Sheriff Longmire

    Around the world, the most enduring symbol of the U.S. is that of the cowboy. A very small percentage of Americans live in Western rural areas, and fewer still are cowboys. But the fascination with the American West is kept alive by such cultural offerings as “Longmire,” a series of books and TV episodes about a fictional Wyoming sheriff. VOA’s Greg Flakus recently spoke with Longmire’s creator, Craig Johnson, and filed this report from Houston.
    Video

    Video Chinese-Americans Heart Trump, Bucking National Trend

    A new study conducted by three Asian-American organizations shows there are three times as many Democrats as there are Republicans among Asian-American voters, and they favor Hillary Clinton over Donald Trump. But one group, called Chinese-Americans For Trump, is going against the tide and strongly supports the business tycoon. VOA’s Elizabeth Lee caught up with them at a Trump rally and reports from Anaheim, California.
    Video

    Video Reactions to Trump's Success Polarized Abroad

    What seemed impossible less than a year ago is now almost a certainty. New York real estate mogul Donald Trump has won the number of delegates needed to secure the Republican presidential nomination. The prospect has sparked as much controversy abroad as it has in the United States. Zlatica Hoke has more.
    Video

    Video Drawings by Children in Hiroshima Show Hope and Peace

    On Friday, President Barack Obama will visit Hiroshima, Japan, the first American president to do so while in office. In August 1945, the United States dropped an atomic bomb on the city to force Japan's surrender in World War II. Although their city lay in ruins, some Hiroshima schoolchildren drew pictures of hope and peace. The former students and their drawings are now part of a documentary called “Pictures from a Hiroshima Schoolyard.” VOA's Deborah Block has the story.
    Video

    Video Vietnamese Rapper Performs for Obama

    A prominent young Vietnamese artist told President Obama said she faced roadblocks as a woman rapper, and asked the president about government support for the arts. He asked her to rap, and he even offered to provide a base beat for her. Watch what happened.
    Video

    Video Roots Run Deep for Tunisia's Dwindling Jewish Community

    This week, hundreds of Jewish pilgrims are defying terrorist threats to celebrate an ancient religious festival on the Tunisian island of Djerba. The festivities cast a spotlight on North Africa's once-vibrant Jewish population that has all but died out in recent decades. Despite rising threats of militant Islam and the country's battered economy, one of the Arab world's last Jewish communities is staying put and nurturing a new generation. VOA’s Lisa Bryant reports.

    Special Report

    Adrift The Invisible African Diaspora