Case Response Anti-Polio Campaign To Start From Monday

RAWALPINDI, (UrduPoint / Pakistan Point News – 29th Oct, 2023) Punjab is all set to launch an Outbreak Response in four districts including Rawalpindi from Monday after the national laboratory confirmed the presence of poliovirus in environmental samples of Rawalpindi and Lahore in October.

The campaign will be held in Rawalpindi, Lahore, Sheikhupura and Rajanpur, confirmed the Coordinator of the Emergency Operations Centre and head of the polio programme, Punjab Khizer Afzaal on Sunday.

During a meeting with District Health Authorities of the four districts, he stressed the vaccination of children missed in the October round of the campaign.

He also instructed the district officials to chalk out a coverage plan for children missed in the last campaign.

In Lahore and Rawalpindi, the campaign will last for seven days while in Rajanpur and Sheikhupura, the campaign will be held for five days.

Rajanpur, which shares a common provincial boundary with Balochistan and Sindh, has been included in the campaign due to wide-scale population movement from both provinces.

Sindh and Balochistan had reported a polio case and positive environmental sample respectively in October.

Similarly, Sheikhupura was included in the campaign due to the scale of population movement from Lahore.

The inoculation drive against polio will cover 32,000 polio workers including 14,000 workers in Lahore, 7,000 in Rawalpindi, 7,000 in Sheikhupura and over 4,000 workers in Rajanpur.

Over 4.2 million children will be given polio drops in the drive including 2.85 million in Lahore, 1 million in Rawalpindi, 0.7 million in Sheikhupura and 0.5 million in Rajanpur.

The EOC head specifically directed the deputy district health officials to personally monitor the polio campaign and all staff under their supervision so that the quality of the campaign was not compromised.

He directed the health officials to ensure that data quality was up to the mark and no child was missed at the transit sites.

The EOC head reiterated that the Punjab government and the department had intensified efforts to keep Punjab free of poliovirus.

About vaccines, the EOC head reassured that multiple doses of oral polio vaccine provided the best protection to children against the virus. He urged parents to fully trust the government‘s efforts to eradicate polio and welcome polio teams during campaigns.
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