Special anti-polio drive to begin in Peshawar on Sunday

Special anti-polio drive to begin in Peshawar on Sunday

PESHAWAR, Pakistan: More than 0.75 million children up to five years of age will be administered anti polio drops during a special anti-polio campaign beginning in Peshawar on Sunday.

The Khyber Pakhtunkhwa health authorities have constituted over 4,300 mobile teams who will visit door to door to administer anti polio drops to children.

In order to avoid any untoward situation, tight security arrangements have been made for the polio teams.

Under section 144, motorcycle riding has been banned in the Peshawar district from morning to evening tomorrow.

On the other hand, a three day anti-polio campaign in different districts of Khyber Pakhtunkhwa will begin on Monday.

In January last year, the World Health Organization (WHO) declared Peshawar as the world’s “largest reservoir” of endemic polio and called for urgent action to boost vaccination.

“With more than 90 per cent of the current polio cases in the country genetically linked to Peshawar, the (city) is now the largest reservoir of endemic poliovirus in the world,” the WHO said in a statement.

A total of 296 polio cases were reported across Pakistan in 2014, the highest number of cases reported in the country since 1998.

On the other hand, the governments’ attempts to eradicate the crippling disease in the country have been badly hit by attacks on polio vaccination teams.

The militant groups continue to target polio workers, claiming that the polio vaccination is a cover for espionage or a Western conspiracy to sterilise Muslims.