Bringing Vaccines to Children in Remote Areas of Cameroon

International Medical Corps Midwife Bertha Tabi is making sure that children in remote parts of Northwest Cameroon have access to childhood vaccines.

by Bader Al Nammur, Field Site Coordinator, Cameroon; Photos by Jiti Humble Tanyu

First published September 15th, 2023 by International Medical Corps.

Immunization means protection. Before International Medical Corps began offering primary health and nutrition services in Oshie, a village in Northwest Cameroon, the integrated health center (IHC) was not functional. This meant that people living in the town and its surrounding villages had to travel to Njikwa District Hospital, which is 8 km (5 miles) away and not connected to Oshie by road, to access routine vaccines for their children. Because this was such a long and difficult journey, many children did not receive the vaccinations they needed.

Once we began supporting the Oshie IHC in August 2021, the situation improved for the area’s newborns and children. Bertha Tabi, an International Medical Corps midwife, was responsible for scheduling one vaccination day every month for different age groups, contacting mothers on her list and asking them to bring their children to the IHC for routine vaccinations.

Bertha’s work made a significant impact on the health of children in the Oshie area. Since we began supporting the Oshie IHC, Bertha provided routine vaccinations to more than 2,300 children and babies. She also has been able to educate mothers about the importance of vaccination and how to keep their children healthy.

Because of her experience and knowledge, the Cameroon mission deployed Bertha to a new position at the Fonfuka Medicalized Health Center, which International Medical Corps began supporting in June 2023. In her new role, she will continue to provide routine vaccinations, and she is responsible for providing other primary healthcare services, such as antenatal care, postnatal care and family planning.

Bertha is excited about her new location and is committed to providing quality healthcare to the people of Fonfuka. She knows that her work can make a difference in the lives of children and families, and she is determined to make the most of the opportunity.

Bertha waves goodbye as she leaves Oshie.

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