Immunisation to humankind is moral obligation for all

07Nov 2019
The Guardian
Immunisation to humankind is moral obligation for all

Immunisation, is the process by which an individual's immune system becomes fortified against an agent known as the immunogen.

When this system is exposed to molecules that are foreign to the body, called non-self, it will orchestrate an immune response, and it will also develop the ability to quickly respond to a subsequent encounter because of immunological memory. This is a function of the adaptive immune system. Therefore, by exposing an animal to an immunogen in a controlled way, its body can learn to protect itself: this is called active immunisation.

The most important elements of the immune system that are improved by immunisation are the T cells, B cells, and the antibodies B cells produce. Memory B cells and memory T cells are responsible for a swift response to a second encounter with a foreign molecule. Passive immunisation is direct introduction of these elements into the body, instead of production of these elements by the body itself.

Immunisation is done through various techniques, most commonly vaccination. Vaccines against microorganisms that cause diseases can prepare the body's immune system, thus helping to fight or prevent an infection. The fact that mutations can cause cancer cells to produce proteins or other molecules that are known to the body forms the theoretical basis for therapeutic cancer vaccines

Immunisations are often widely stated as less risky and an easier way to become immune to a particular disease than risking a milder form of the disease itself. They are important for both adults and children in that they can protect us from the many diseases out there. Immunization not only protects children against deadly diseases but also helps in developing children's immune systems.  Through the use of immunisations, some infections and diseases have almost completely been eradicated throughout the United States and the World. One example is polio.

Thanks to dedicated health care professionals and the parents of children who vaccinated on schedule, polio has been eliminated in the U.S. since 1979. Polio is still found in other parts of the world so certain people could still be at risk of getting it. This includes those people who have never had the vaccine, those who didn't receive all doses of the vaccine, or those traveling to areas of the world where polio is still prevalent.

Active immunisation/vaccination has been named one of the "Ten Great Public Health Achievements in the 20th Century".

In the same vein, Germany has committed Euro 35 million to East African Community to be invested in vaccination programmes in the partner states.

Speaking at the EAC headquarters,  Senior Policy Officer from the German Federal Ministry for Economic Cooperation and Development recently, Claudia Imwolde-Krämer said Germany is contributing Euro 35 million to immunization programmes in the EAC.

Indeed, the Federal Republic of Germany and the EAC have historically had strong and cordial relations dating back to the founding of the EAC, 20 years ago. The two partners been cooperating in different areas with notable achievements being realized in the   health and pharmaceutical sectors; trade and customs; agriculture as well as tourism.

Germany has been supporting immunisation programmes in the region in close collaboration with the EAC and Global Alliance for Vaccines and Immunizations (GAVI)) since 2013. 

The government spends at least 30bn/- annually to enhance immunisation services to prevent the community especially the children against contagious diseases across the country.

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