KARACHI: The Emergency Operation Centre for polio (EOC) Sindh has launched the phase 2 of the Injectable polio vaccine campaign in 8 districts of Northern Sindh to improve children's immunity against the virus.
The campaign will start on 20th and end on 28th March 2017 in 8 districts of Sindh including Dadu, Jacobabad, Kambar, Kashmore, Khairpur, Larkana, shikarpur and Sukkur where 814755 children from 4 to 23 months of age will be given polio injections and 992,982 children under 5 years of age will receive the oral polio vaccine (OPV drops).
Coordinator EOC Sindh Fayaz Jatoi said that people must be aware that IPV is not a replacement for OPV but instead it will further boost children's immunity against polio and protect them against the virus hence parents must also give OPV to their children.
In the current year, 2017, two cases of polio surfaced so far in Pakistan but no case was reported anywhere in Sindh.
Jatoi said that there has been a massive reduction in polio cases and a lot of improvement from previous years. "We cannot rest until the virus is completely eliminated as there is always a chance of its springing up", Jatoi added.
Coordinator EOC Sindh also appealed to health officials and ground teams put in an extra effort over the next few campaigns as we have a golden opportunity to eradicate the virus as shown by the decline in cases across the country from previous years.
There were more than 300 cases of polio in Pakistan in 2014, 54 in 2015 and 20 in 2016 which shows more than an 80% reduction. "Despite the massive headway, we need to maintain the good work and keep improving otherwise we will be endangering the progress that has been made and risk a reverse in the trend", Jatoi stated.