Pakistan

Two more polio cases detected, taking year’s tally to 41

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ISLAMABAD: Two more cases of polio were found in the country over the weekend, taking the tally for the year to 41.

According to the National Institute of Health (NIH), Sindh and Balochistan have reported one case each.

In Sindh, a 14-month-old boy contracted the poliovirus in Kingri Tehsil of Khairpur district.

“The child from Balochistan is an eight-month-old male boy in Bazar-i-Kona union council of Pishin district. All his four limbs have been paralysed. The child’s socio-economic status is poor as his father is a farmer,” an official said.

Polio is a highly infectious disease which 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 most effective way to protect children from this crippling disease.

Each time a child under the age of five is vaccinated, his or her immunity against the virus is strengthened. Repeated immunisations have protected millions of children from polio, allowing almost all countries in the world to become polio-free.

There are only two countries — Pakistan and Afghanistan — from where polio has not been eradicated. Pakistan remains under a polio-linked travel restriction imposed by the World Health Organisation which makes it mandatory for every citizen travelling abroad to carry a vaccination certificate.

Published in Dawn, April 20th, 2020

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