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INVISIBLE MURDERER: NEONATAL TETANUS

Keywords: neonatal tetanus , neonatal tetanus elimination , tetanus immunization

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Abstract:

Neonatal tetanus (NNT) has been secondary in the whole world in the death list of diseases which can be protected by the help of vaccine. It’s an important community health problem in the less-developed countries in which pre-birth care services are limited, assisting a mother at childbirth by uneducated people in dirty atmosphere and the immunity against tetanus is not enough. Studies have shown that minor part of the cases have been expressed in most of the countries. Because of that NNT have been called as “silent/invisible murderer”. In Turkey, in the year of 2003 it has been seen 15 cases, and 12 of them have been resulted in death. The methods which will be applied to carry out the elimination of NNT are; the vaccination of pregnant women with at least two doses tetanus toxoid and providing clean birth conditions for all of the pregnant women. However, in Turkey the proportion of the women who have two doses of tetanus vaccine is 41%. To eliminate NNT in our country, all the pregnant women must be attained, the ones who are attained must be presented with qualified pre-birth care service which also includes tetanus immunity and the births must be carried out under healty conditions. As smallpox and polio eradication, NNT elimination will also be accomplished by self-sacrificing works of personnel in primary health care.

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