KABUL, Afghanistan, April 5, 2017 /PRNewswire/ -- The Ministry of Public Health (MoPH) in Afghanistan and McCann Health announced today the launch of The Immunity Charm™, a simple creative solution that harnesses a long-standing cultural tradition, to provide mothers with a powerful new incentive to get their children vaccinated.
A simple bracelet, similar to those found universally among infants in Afghanistan to protect against evil spirits, The Immunity Charm™ consists of colored beads that represent the vaccines each child has received.
Healthcare workers provide The Immunity Charm™ to mothers to place on their newborn's wrist as a symbol of protection against disease. Each time the child is brought for an immunization, a color-coded bead corresponding to the specific vaccine received is added to the bracelet symbolizing the protective effects of the vaccine. As the child receives additional vaccines against such diseases as measles, polio, diphtheria, and others, color-coded beads are added to the bracelet.
"We are excited to work with McCann Health on the development and testing of this potentially important new tool to help us increase vaccination rates in our country," said Dr. Ferozuddin Feroz, Public Health Minister, Government of the Islamic Republic of Afghanistan. "The Ministry of Public Health in Afghanistan is committed to testing creative solutions to difficult challenges that we face in our country."
"Harnessing cultural traditions is one of the best ways to address public health problems, which has such deep rooted misconceptions, practices embedded in history," says Dr. Harshit Jain, Marketing Director (APAC) & Country Head (INDIA), McCann Health.
Afghanistan has some of the lowest vaccination rates in the world, which contribute to high levels of infant and childhood mortality especially in poor and rural communities. Diseases that are rare in the developed world are far too frequent causes of child mortality in Afghanistan.
Once initial evaluation of The Immunity Charm™ is completed, plans will be developed for larger scale evaluation in clinics in Afghanistan.
About the Ministry of Public Health Afghanistan
The Mission of the Ministry of Public Health of the Government of the Islamic Republic of Afghanistan is to prevent ill health and achieve significant reductions in mortality in line with national targets and sustainable development goals and to reduce impoverishment due to catastrophic health expenditure. Also to be responsive to the rights of all citizens through improving access and utilization of quality, equitable, affordable health and nutrition services among all communities especially mothers and children in rural areas, and through changing attitudes and practices, promoting healthy life-styles and effectively implementing other public health interventions. All in coordination and collaboration with other stakeholders within the framework of strong leadership, sustained political will and commitment, good governance, and effective and efficient management; in its continuous pursuit to become a ministerial 'institution of excellence'.
About McCann Health
McCann Health, winner of the 2016 Cannes Lions Healthcare Network of the Year Award and the 2016 Global Awards Healthcare Network of the Year for the fifth year in a row, is one of the world's most awarded global healthcare marketing networks specializing in a wide array of professional and consumer health and wellness practices. McCann Health (www.mccannhealth.com) consists of three strong marketing communications global networks: McCann Torre Lazur, McCann Healthcare (professional) and McCann HumanCare (consumer health & wellness). Specialty units include McCann Echo, McCann Global Health, McCann Pharmacy Initiative, Consulting at McCann Health, McCann Managed Markets and McCann Complete Medical. McCann Health is part of McCann Worldgroup and the Interpublic Group (NYSE: IPG).
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SOURCE McCann Health