Pakistan

Prime Minister Shahbaz Sharif inaugurates the second nationwide Polio Campaign of 2022

ISLAMABAD, 18 May 2022 – Prime Minister Shahbaz Sharif inaugurated the second nationwide polio campaign of the year 2022 at the PM house while assuring that the government would take all measures to eradicate this crippling disease. The vaccination campaign will be conducted from 23-27 May across Pakistan.

The campaign aims to reach approximately 43.3 million children under the age of five with the life-saving polio vaccine. Around 340,000 polio frontline workers will provide polio vaccines at the doorsteps across the country. During the planned campaign, a supplementary dose of Vitamin A drops will also be administered to children aged 6 to 59 months.

The prime minister kicked off the polio eradication campaign by administering vaccination drops to some children, expecting that polio vaccination will reach to all eligible children especially in polio high-risk districts of Pakistan.

Addressing a gathering at the Prime House in Islamabad, he instructed the federal and provincial governments and district management to address the challenges of persistently missed children, refusals and fake finger marking during the campaign.

He showed concern on three new polio cases reported in North Waziristan fearing the spread of poliovirus in other parts of the country and across the border. “I urge all parents and caregivers to get their children vaccinated instead of hiding them or refusing to take the necessary drops during all vaccination drives. It is important to realize that the polio virus still exists in our surroundings and no child is safe until all children are truly vaccinated,” he added.

It is pertinent to mention that the Polio Porgramme is working in partnership with various segments of Pakistani society, including communities, local influencers, pediatric and medical associations, media, social activists, religious leaders, and the Pakistan Cricket Board, and many others. They are all supportive of vaccination and the goal of reaching a polio free Pakistan.

The toll-free Helpline 1166 and 24/7 WhatsApp Polio Helpline 0346-777-65-46 will be available to assist parents and caregivers by providing information about vaccines and campaign information.

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Note to Editors:

Polio is a highly infectious disease caused by a virus mainly affects children under the age of five. It invades the nervous system and can cause paralysis or even death. While there is no cure for polio, vaccination is the only effective way to protect our children from the crippling disease. Every time children under the age of five get the polio vaccine, they are more protected. Such repeated immunizations have protected millions of children from polio and made most of the countries around the world polio free.

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