PM orders emergency polio eradication plan for high-risk areas

PM Kakar

ISLAMABAD, Dec 06 (APP): Caretaker Prime Minister Anwaar-ul-Haq Kakar on Wednesday directed formulation of an emergency polio eradication plan and launch of integrated programmes in high-risk union councils.

Chairing a meeting on Task Force on Polio Eradication, he emphasized monitoring of polio vaccination campaigns by using modern technology.

Expressing the recent report of police cases, the prime minister regretted that the crippling disease, which was eradicated from the globe, still existed in Pakistan and Afghanistan.

PM Kakar said regarding the use of Inactivated Polio Virus (IPV) vaccine, best international practices and research needed to be taken into consideration.

He directed resumption of the regular polio immunization campaign across the country.

The prime minister lauded the efforts of international community and development partners in polio eradication.

He mentioned that enhanced cooperation on polio eradication was agreed upon in a meeting with Bill Gates, the co-chair of Bill and Melinda Gates Foundation on the sidelines of Conference of Parties (COP28).

The prime minister stressed including teachers, scholars and parents for raising awareness on polio eradication.

Terming polio vaccine vital for the health, growth and future of children, he said all segments of the society needed to play their role in polio eradication.

He directed holding an Ulema Convention and taking onboard scholars to raise awareness on the issue.

The meeting was informed that special polio health camps had been set up in the high-risk zone of Dera Ismail Khan, while the same were being established in the vulnerable areas of Bannu, Lakki Marwat and Tank.

In the recent polio awareness drives, 44 million children have been administered vaccine.

It was highlighted that Punjab, Balochistan, Azad Jammu and Kashmir, and Gilgit-Baltistan are polio-free, whereas some union councils in the southern Khyber Pakhtunkhwa are more affected.

The meeting was told that the polio teams are administering vaccine to the children at the illegal Afghan repatriation camps at Peshawar, Nowshera and Chaman.

The meeting was attended by interim federal health minister Dr Nadeem Jan, caretaker chief minister KP Justice (retired) Arshad Hussain Shah, senior officials of National Task Force, chief secretaries and officials of law enforcement agencies.

By Shumaila Andleeb

Shumaila Andleeb; Senior Reporter at Associated Press of Pakistan; covering the beats of President, Prime Minister, Foreign Office, and Special Assignments.

APP Services