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Health Ministry extends vaccination campaign for children in Ecuador

Quito, Jul 14 (Prensa Latina) The Ministry of Public Health of Ecuador announced yesterday that the vaccination campaign against measles, rubella and polio will be extended until July 31.

The vaccination campaign was scheduled to end on July 9, however, the decision to extend the deadline aims to increase the number of children immunized, said the health agency and recalled that the vaccines are available free of charge throughout the country.

More than three million children have already received the doses and, according to the health agency, the aim of the initiative is to reach 3.7 million children between one and 12 years of age with the injectables.

Immunization against these diseases is part of the basic vaccination schedule in the South American nation, and its shortage in the public health system – according to local media – had provoked complaints from parents. In recent statements to the press, the Ecuadorian Minister of Public Health, José Ruales, explained that measles and rubella vaccines will be given to children between two and 12 years of age, while polio immunization will be given to children between one and seven years of age.

In February, the Pan American Health Organization (PAHO) issued an epidemiological alert warning about the possibility of measles outbreaks due to the reduction of vaccination in the region.

PAHO estimates that more than 1.7 million infants in 28 countries and territories in the Americas did not receive the first dose of measles vaccine in their first year of life.

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