Japanese Encephalitis Vaccination Campaign in November and December 2017, Myanmar

Japanese Encephalitis (JE) is an important public health problem in South East Asia and the Pacific. In Myanmar, the national Expanded Programme on Immunization (EPI) with the support of WHO and UNICEF is introducing JE vaccine routinely from 2018. Prior to this, a nationwide catch-up vaccination campaign is targeting 14 million children (9 months to 15 years) during November and December 2017 with the support of GAVI funds. This approach is expected to provide high immunity against JE before incorporation of JE vaccines into the national routine immunization schedule. Both campaign and routine programmes will use WHO prequalified (SA 14-14-2) JE vaccine. The goal is to rapidly achieve reductions in morbidity and mortality associated with Japanese Encephalitis. The theme of the campaign is “Get all children immunized against Japanese Encephalitis”, in all states and regions of the country.

There are two phases of introduction. First, school phase JE vaccination targeting 5-15 years old students through the period 15-23 November 2017. Second, community phase JE vaccination targeting 9 months - 5 years (out-of-school) children during 11-20 December 2017. EPI programme advocated extensively with a wide range of stakeholders and civil society to raise awareness and engage support.