Punjab is hoping for a zero polio year as it prepares to polio campaign of the year from December 19 to 21. The campaign will target 18.4 million under-five children. “Even though Punjab is eying 12 months without case, persistent circulation of virus means threat is still there and the good job has to continue, ”Punjab Minister for Primary and Secondary Healthcare Khawaja Imran Nazir said.
Secretary Primary and Secondary Healthcare Ali Jan Khan directed the districts to ensure compliance with indicators of the National Emergency Action for Polio Eradication. As part of the plan, all districts are required to prepare micro plans and hold preparatory meetings under the chair of DCOs.
Punjab’s Emergency Operation Coordinator Dr. Munir Ahmed said recent environmental samples have been a cause of concern indicating the presence virus in the environment. Dr. Munir Ahmed, who won global acclaim for controlling dengue epidemic between 2011 to 2013, further said: “At the end of the year, we are going to give this campaign our best shot. Rawalpindi positive sample last week was 10th in Punjab this year. We have had three positive samples apiece in Lahore and Rawalpindi, two in Faisalabad and one in Multan and one in Dera Ghazi Khan.”