ISLAMABAD .: The National Emergency Operations Centre for Polio Eradication on Monday confirmed that four more polio cases have been reported from Balochistan and Khyber Pakhtunkhwa (K-P).
According to an official of centre, the new cases confirmed by the Polio Virology Laboratory have been found in District Jaffarabad and Killa Abdullah in Balochistan and district Bannu in the K-P.
He said the new cases from Balochistan and K-P bring the total number of polio cases reported this year in the country to 41. “A total of 33 polio cases have been reported from the K-P, three cases from Punjab, three cases from Sindh and two cases from Balochistan,” he said.
He said the K-P children include thirty-month-old boy and 12-month-old girl both from district Bann. The children from Balochistan include eight-month-old Imtiaz, a resident of Gandakha area of Jaffarabad and nine-month-old Hibatullah, whose family lives in Janu Kahol area of Killa Abdullah.
The Killa Abdullah family had reportedly hid the child during the anti-polio campaign in the area while the family of Jaffarabad baby had refused to get their child vaccinated. According to the official, families of the K-P children had also refused to allow polio teams vaccinate their children.
“These are the first two polio cases of polio to be reported from Balochistan this year.”
He said the new cases are yet another reminder that as long as the polio virus exists anywhere in the country, no child is safe. “Fortunately, children who are vaccinated against polio multiple times are able to fight the virus back. The more doses of the polio vaccine a child receives, the higher the chances of escaping lifelong paralysis,” he added.
Prime Minister’s Focal Person on Polio Eradication Babar Bin Atta said: “The next door-to-door polio vaccination campaign in selected districts will be started in the month of July and August.”
He appealed to parents, religious leaders and other stakeholders to convince people to vaccinate their children. He said polio is a highly infectious disease caused by polio virus that mainly affects children under the age of five. It invades the nervous system, and can cause paralysis or even death.
“While there is no cure for polio and vaccination is the most effective way to protect children from this crippling disease. Each time a child under the age of five is vaccinated, their protection against the virus is increased,” he added.
Atta said the repeated immunisations have protected millions of children from polio, allowing almost all countries in the world to become polio free.
WITH ADDITIONAL INPUT FROM APP