ISLAMABAD: An anti-polio campaign of various durations will start across the country from today aiming to inoculate over four million children.
The SOPs to protect from coronavirus will be strictly implemented during the campaign. In Punjab, 20 million children between two to five years of age will be administered anti-polio vaccine during five-day drive. According to a spokesman of Punjab Health Department, 120,000 health workers will take part in the campaign.
In Sindh, nine million children under the age of five years will be administered anti-polio drops during a week-long drive. In Khyber Pakhtunkhwa, more than 6.4 million children up to five years of age will be administered anti-polio drops during five-day campaign.
According to Emergency Operation Center Khyber Pakhtunkhwa, about 30,000 teams have been constituted which will visit door-to-door to vaccinate the children. Polio teams will also be present at bus stops, railway stations, Afghan refugee camps and other public places to ensure vaccination of every child.
In Gilgit Baltistan, over 242,000 children up to five years of age will be administered anti-polio vaccine. The health department has constituted 1690 fixed and mobile teams for this purpose.
In Azad Jammu and Kashmir, more than 66,000 children will be administered anti-polio drops during five day anti-polio campaign. According to AJK Health Department, 2000 mobile teams have been constituted for the drive, while 397 fixed and 124 transit points have also been set up to make the anti-polio drive successful.
Special Assistant to the Prime Minister on Health Dr Faisal Sultan launched the campaign on March 26 in Islamabad. More than 40 million children under the age of five will get the polio vaccine. Around 285,000 frontline workers will go door-to-door in all 156 districts across the country Pakistan to give polio drops.
“COVID-19 continues to challenge us, but we are committed to ensuring continuity of the essential public health services during these difficult times. It is an absolute must that all our eligible children stay protected against vaccine preventable diseases including polio,” said Dr Sultan. “It’s every Pakistani’s national duty to ensure that your own children, as well as those around you, are administered polio vaccine without fail.”
Pakistan has reported one polio case so far this year. The virus was detected in a child in Balochistan. Pakistan is one of the two countries in the world along with neighbouring Afghanistan where the poliovirus is epidemic.