‘Polio eradication to be taken as challenge’

Islamabad

A four-day anti-polio campaign will start in selected high-risk districts of Punjab and Sindh from tomorrow. A spokesman of Punjab Health Department talking to media said the campaign would be carried out in Lahore, Rawalpindi, Dera Ghazi Khan, Muzaffargarh, Rajanpur, Faisalabad, Multan, Rahim Yar Khan and Bahawalpur Districts.
Meanwhile, Commissioner Sukkur division Manzoor Ali Shaikh chairing a Divisional Task Force for anti-polio meeting stressed for proper monitoring and security of polio teams at transit and entry points. He appreciated the role of international partners in polio eradication, and said that he hoped that Pakistan would be a polio free country soon. Appealing to parents to get their children vaccinated, he said parents should not take serious negative propaganda against polio drops and take part in the drive to stem-out the disease from the country.
Commissioner Malakand Division Syed Zaheerul Islam Shah has said that Polio has become our national dilemma that must be taken as challenge as it caused big losses to the country. He said this while addressing at the concluding session of the two-day media sensitisation workshop for journalists of southern districts conducted by Emergency Operations Center Khyber Pakhtunkhwa on polio eradication Initiative (PEI) at local hotel in Saidu Sharif, District Swat.
Director EPI KP Dr Akram Shah, Technical Focal Person BMGF Dr Imtiaz, Team Leader UNICEF Dr Johar, Provincial Polio Eradication Officer WHO, Dr Illaudin, District Health Officer Swat Dr Subhani, Communication for Development Officer UNICEF Ejaz Ur Rehman and Head of Pediatrics Department of Saidu Teaching Hospitals, Dr Israrul Haq were present on the occasion.
He said polio handicapped our children on one hand while loomed global sanctions against Pakistan on the other. ‘Media has to play role in uprooting this menace through public awareness on the disease and vaccination to prevent child disabilities,’ he added. Commissioner Malakand said that media is an important pillar of the state that molded public opinion and urged it to remove misconceptions related to polio vaccination and generate demand in the community for polio and other essential immunization.
He said efforts for polio eradication were high with the lowest case count since the launch of door-to-door polio vaccination campaign in 1994 in the country and asked media to help the government in giving last push to the crippling disease by creating public demand for polio vaccination.—APP

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