Panafrican News Agency

President Tshisekedi vows to make vaccination key in universal health coverage in DRC

Kinshasa, DR Congo (PANA) – DR Congo’s president, Felix Tshisekedi, has restated his commitment to make vaccination a major force for the universal health coverage in his county.


He was speaking on Monday in Kinshasa when he opened the national forum on vaccination and eradication of poliomyelitis in DR Congo.


President Tshisekedi said he was relieved by talks which offer participants the opportunity to share ideas on how to better protect "our children through vaccination".


He urged participants to spare no effort to provide strong and relevant proposals with regard to the expectations of the country in terms of vaccination to eradicate poliomyelitis with a reinforced health system. 


 He said his vision is that all Congolese should have access to basic health care and needs, without having financial or economic problem.


On children, the Congolese president regretted that despite the sustained efforts made by the government and partners, DR Congo still records an infantile mortality rate among the highest in the world.


This is the reason, he added, he made the commitment to reverse the tendency by working endlessly.  


‘’Our country has always supported that activity through the extended programme on immunization established by the ministry of Health, whether through continued routine vaccination or through massive vaccination campaigns because certain diseases that kill children are avoidable through vaccination," he said.  


The forum offers the opportunity to extend thoughts at the technical and political levels and especially strengthen the implementation of priority strategies for the relaunch of the Extended Programme on Immunization (EPI), including the political commitment and duty of authorities at the national and provincial level.


The talks will offer the opportunity to analyze the vaccination challenges and set recommendations, perspectives and commitments, as well as the responsibility of the different actors. 


"Governors of provinces are urged to engage for the vaccination of children in their respective provinces and to accompany vaccination campaigns for a positive assessment of that action. They are also invited to establish a budget credit line for vaccination."  


Apart from President Tshisekedi, the talks were attended by the Speakers of the Parliament and the Senate, the Prime Minister, the minister of health, several government members, governors of provinces, Speakers of provincial parliaments, provincial health ministers, members of the diplomatic corps, delegations from the World Health Organisation (WHO), UNICEF, Gavi Vaccine Alliance, USAID, US-CDC, the Bill and Melinda Gates Foundation, Rotary international, PATH, Caritas, SANRU, JSI, Village Reach, ACASUS, civil society organisations, the private sector and other key health partners.

-0- PANA KON/IS/MSA/VAO 22July2019