Project Country: Niger

Meningitis Vaccination Campaign Niger

Time frame:  Apr. 2009 - Aug. 2009

Type of Assistance: Medical Emergency and Catastrophe Relief

Meningococcal meningitis – a meningitis caused by bacteria – is not uncommon in Niger. Especially small children often fall prey to the disease since many of them have a weakened immune system already that is no longer able to defend itself against further attacks.

For this reasons, vaccination campaigns against this life-threatening inflammatory disease are carried out at regular intervals in the West-African country.

In 2009, however, Niger saw an occurrence of meningitis ten times higher than in the preceding years. After an outbreak in the east of the country, the disease spread like an epidemic.

The vaccines available were in no way sufficient to ensure the protection of all parts of the population who were threatened by the disease. In some areas, no delivery of vaccines was possible at all.

Based at the humedica clinic in the district of Kollo and supported by the Foreign Office of the Federal Republic of Germany, we succeeded in launching an additional large-scale vaccination programme to protect those people against meningitis who could not have been reached otherwise.

More than 43.000 vaccinations were carried out by humedica doctors, most of them in the district of Kollo. Those who were already suffering from the disease were immediately admitted to our hospital and given treatment.

In addition, humedica carried out trainings and information campaigns to give the population and the local medical staff a deeper knowledge of the causes and treatment options of this life-threatening disease and of ways to protect themselves and others against it.

These measures have made a significant contribution to keeping the number of meningitis cases in the region low. Thanks to humedica’s quick action, it has been possible to contain the meningitis epidemic quicker than expected.

Articles about our work for this project

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