6 Aug 2012

Vaccines introduced to fight pneumonia in Fijian children

1:32 pm on 6 August 2012

Fijian newborns will become the first to benefit from three life-saving vaccines being introduced to the country in a month.

The pneumococcal vaccine to fight pneumonia will be introduced in September to cut the number of cases in children and newborns.

More than 550 children under five in Fiji suffer from pneumonia each year.

Two other vaccines, the Rotavirus vaccine and the Human Papilloma Virus, or HPV, vaccine, will also be introduced to immunise thousands against diarrhoea, sepsis, and cervical cancer.

Australia is funding the programme with the help of Fiji's Ministry of Health.

About 22,000 babies will receive the vaccines over the four-year programme.