Wednesday Jan 15, 2020
PESHAWAR: The National Institute of Health (NIH) has notified a new wild polio virus (WPV) case from Khyber Pakhtunkhwa's (KP) Lakki Marwat district, taking the number of cases registered across the province to 92, reported The News.
Lakki Marwat, with 32 polio cases, is the worst-performing district in terms of protection against polio, with the most number of polio cases registered in the province from a single district. Health department officials said the wild polio virus has been isolated in a sample.
The epidemiological study of the child from whom the virus was isolated showed that the family had allegedly refused essential immunisation to the child and he did not receive any dose of the essential immunisation. The medical history of the family is also under investigation.
Lakki Marwat is followed by Bannu district, with 26 polio cases identified from the area. The year 2019 saw a dramatic rise in the number of polio cases registered across the province, despite the fact that the government had been involved in a massive anti-polio campaign.
Commenting on the reporting of new polio case from Lakki Marwat, Coordinator of Emergency Operation Centre KP Abdul Basit lamented that another child was crippled by polio due to misconceptions of a family.
"Polio has turned into an epidemic in southern districts, particularly Bannu where 66 children have been left with permanent disabilities," Basit told The News.
“It should serve as an eye opener for the people of Lakki Marwat and Bannu, who are resisting polio vaccination and are therefore responsible for the lifelong disability of their children,” he added.
He also maintained that polio vaccine was completely safe and permissible, and that the entire world, including the Muslim countries, had eradicated polio using the same vaccine.
Basit added that polio could be eradicated through repeated vaccination and multiple doses of the oral polio vaccine (OPV) were required to stop virus circulation in the environment.
Originally published in The News