Pakistan

Polio cases drop to zero in tribal areas

PESHAWAR: With change in mindset of Khyber Pakhtunkhwa (KP) tribal residents about polio drops, number of polio cases has dropped to zero in two years from 179 cases in 2014. This report has been confirmed by Emergency Operation Center Tribal Areas to ARY News website.

Public Relations Officer (PRO) Emergency Operation Center Tribal Areas Aqeel Ahmed told ARY News website that tremendous change in the mindset of tribal residents has been observed regarding administration of polio drops and taking precautionary measures to safeguard children from polio disease.

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It is pertinent here to mention that tribal areas of Khyber Pakhtunkhwa are emerging with improved facilities, forward thinking and advanced development after passing through the face of anarchy, violence and instability for three decades.

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This region surfaced in the world as the region with most reported polio cases in 2014 with 179 cases. However, there has been no report of any polio case here from Nov 2015 to May 2016.

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The PRO emergency operation center said 330618 children, 31 percent, remained unadministered in 2014, because of inaccessibility in the region and unawareness about polio which refrained many people from getting their children administered polio drops, which has reduced to less than one percent in 2016.

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“247 cases of refusal and 3725 cases of inaccessibility reported out of target of administering 965675 children,” he said.

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He said areas of Sarokai, Sararogha and Ladhaku had been opened for polio teams which had reduced cases of inaccessibility and increased administration of polio drops.

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“Since border of tribal areas lies along Afghanistan where polio cases are still being reported, therefore they have setup monitoring cells to administer polio drops to children on the border,” he said.

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According to a report six polio cases in KP and five in Afghanistan have been reported in 2016. Total 11 cases have been reported across Pakistan this year including four in Sindh, one in Balochistan and no case in reported in Punjab, Gilgit-Baltistan and Azad Jammu and Kashmir.

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