Childhood tuberculosis is a major public health problem in Pakistan with roughly 20% of tuberculosis patients detected every year being children under the age of 15. The Expanded Programme on immunization includes a TB bacilli Calmette-Guerin (BCG) vaccine that though does not provide 100% protection against TB, but it significantly decreases the chances of your child getting this serious disease.
In coordination with Primary and Secondary Health care, we designed an aggressive communication strategy to educate parents about the vaccination course including the BCG vaccine.
Our approach was to produce documentaries based on the awareness messages delivered by community motivators, activist and health professionals. The documentaries also highlighted the importance of precautionary measures to avoid the spread of disease in children.
The cultural orientation of some areas in Pakistan discourages vaccination courses because of their faulty believes that vaccinations can sterile their children and such courses are prohibited by Islam. To counter these false believes we approached religious leaders to change the orthodox mindset of people.
Workshop and lectures were arranged in coordination with WHO to train the pediatricians and health professionals to communicate the benefits of vaccination courses to parents. Lectures were conducted in RHCs. BHUs to train the lady health workers and guide them about community counseling.
In the urban metros, we published print ads and brochures to tap the conscience of patients. Steamers were displayed on roads to catch the attention of the public. Events and workshops were organized in community centers to educate parents. The awareness campaign successfully mobilized parents to get their kids vaccinated.