First Lady Rebecca Akufo-Addo took her social media activities to another level on Monday when she held, for the first time, a live Twitter chat with the Deputy Chief Executive Officer of GAVI Alliance, Anuradha Gupta.
Using the Twitter handle @RAkufoAddo and @Vaccines, the two women, who are passionate about immunisation for children, shared ideas on vaccines and the importance of working together to protect the future of children through answering questions from @gavi.
Mrs Akufo-Addo, who set the ball rolling with the hashtag #Ghana4Vaccines, said vaccines are important for the healthy development of children no matter where they are born.
“I want children to beat the potential risks they are prone to in their early years. #VaccinesWork it is that simple,” she tweeted in response to the question; what does #vaccinework mean to you personally? Why did you vaccinate your children? Why should parents vaccinate theirs?
Sharing her thoughts on the role vaccination plays in reducing child mortality and achieving the @globalgoalsUN, the first lady tweeted, “Immunisation is essential if we want to achieve sustainable development and global health security. The long-term benefit when children are vaccinated is that nations thrive.”
Mrs Akufo-Addo said strong public and community health systems increase the ability to detect and contain outbreaks when they occur, adding that vaccines can be administered even under a tree in a community setting and it doesn't require brick and mortar.
Responding to @gavi on the economic impact of vaccination, the first lady tweeted, “By reducing illness and long-term disability, vaccines save money for families, communities and countries. Vaccination is the bedrock of a health system because it is normally the first health intervention to reach communities.”
In concluding the conversation, the first lady shared her vaccine week message tweeting that “vaccines are key to ensuring that children get a healthy start in life. I believe every child deserves a healthy childhood in Africa and around the world. Parents should ensure this and I cannot stress on this enough.”