Two polio cases reported from Bajaur
By Ikram Junaidi
ISLAMABAD: Two polio cases have been reported from Bajaur tribal district in Khyber Pakhtunkhwa, bringing the total number of cases in the country to eight so far this year.
`The identification of new cases is yet another reminder that as long as the poliovirus exists anywhere in the country, no child is safe from being infected, said National Coordinator for Polio Eradication Dr Rana Mohammad Safdar.
According to the details shared by the National Emergency Operations CentreforPolioEradication, the virus detected from sewerage samples in Bajaur during the past few months managed to infect a fiveyear-old girl and a sevenyear-old boy.
The poliovirus was isolated from the stool samples of both children presenting with atypical symptoms of facial palsy and slight weakness as the multiple doses of Oral Polio Vaccine had boosted their immunity.
`Vaccinating all children in every campaign is important to attain full immunity against the poliovirus,` said Dr Safdar. `Fortunately, children who are vaccinated against pollo multiple times are able to fight the virus back. The more doses of the pollo vaccine a child receives, the higher the chances of escaping lifelong paralysis,` he added.
According to him, children who are not vaccinated against polio or have not received enough doses of the vaccine to fight off the virus are at far greater risk of developing lifelong paralysis or even dying.
`There is no cure for polio once the damage is done. It is entirely safe to give multiple doses,` said Dr Safdar.
Prime Minister`s Focal Person on Polio Eradication Babar Bin Atta said every child should be immunised so that the virus has nowhere to go.
He said the next door-todoor polio vaccination campaign in selected districts will be from November 12-15, while the next country-wide campaign will be from December 10-13.
Anwarullah Khan adds from Khar: Field supervisor medical officer Dr Abdur Rehman said that both the infected children belonged to Mamond tehsil.
They were identified as Abubal(ar and Azira Bibi.
Both had been administered the polio vaccines seven times. They were dropped from the recent vaccination campaigns because of their age.
The official said that their physical condition was stated to be normal as they were not paralysed after detecting positive poliovirus.