Two-thirds of unimmunized children live in conflict-affected countries: UNICEF

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UNITED NATIONS, April 24 (APP): Almost two-thirds of children who have not been immunized with basic vaccines live in countries that are either partially or entirely affected by conflict, UNICEF said ahead of World Immunization Week.

“Conflict creates an ideal environment for disease outbreaks,” UNICEF Chief of Immunization Robin Nandy said. “Children miss out out on basic immunizations because of the breakdown – and sometimes deliberate destruction – of vital health services. Even when medical services are available, insecurity in the area often prevents them from reaching children.”

Measles, diarrhoea, respiratory infections and malnutrition are major causes of childhood illness and death, and in conflict and emergencies, their effects can worsen, UNICEF said.