Fine-tuning polio eradication programme
Chief Secretary Khyber Pukhtunkhwa Dr. KazimNiaz, while presiding over a meeting, directed Commissioners and Deputy Commissioners to take cognizance of reports about new polio cases and implement comprehensive strategies for making the province polio fee at the earliest.
Despite the implementation of extensive and sustained polio vaccination programme new polio cases are being reported. World Health Organisation recommends off and on recommend travel ban and make mandatory polio vaccination for Pakistanis who wants to travel abroad. The mass awareness campaign of the government highlighting the importance of this vaccination in print and on electronic media is outdone on social media by the opponents of anti-polio programme. The level of resistance is more in the tribal districts and the adjoining settled districts and local administrations are fully aware of it. Involvement of elected representatives of local bodies had also not produced the desired results to persuade and convince the parents to allow administering polio drops to their children in the age group of 1-5 years.
The meeting deliberated over the proposal of increasing the extended ammonization centers, increase in the emoluments of polio workers and involvement of prominent religious personalities and local ulema. Voluntary services of prominent religious scholars and local ulema had been utilised in creating awareness against the menace of polio and persuading people for anti-polio vaccination. They used to be leading speakers at anti-polio seminars and they had performed appreciable job of educating public opinion. But since then this dimension of successful polio eradication programme went out of government priorities. Hence resistance against vaccination rose and risk to the lives of workers and police on security duty increased.