Friday, February 3, 2023

Poliovirus detected in environmental samples of Lahore


ISLAMABAD: The dream of Pakistan for becoming a polio-free state remained unfulfilled as the first environmental samples from Lahore of 2023 confirmed the existence of the crippling disease, ARY News reported on Thursday.

In the first month of 2023, poliovirus has been confirmed in the environmental samples collected in the Punjab capital Lahore, said sources within the health ministry, adding that the genetic diagnosis of the virus is underway.

Sources said that Type-1 wild poliovirus was detected in the sewage sample collected from Lahore’s Gulshan-e-Ravi. The health teams collected the sewage samples from different areas of Lahore on January 3.

In 2022, poliovirus had been detected in 37 environmental samples across the country.

In December last year, the National Polio Lab (NPL) had confirmed polio virus in environmental samples in Bannu.


Type-1 wild poliovirus had been found in a sewage sample from Bannu’s Muslimabad Sokarai area. The NPL detected the virus for the 11th time last year in samples collected from Bannu. Overall 27 climatic samples had confirmed the existence of the poliovirus last year.

It is noteworthy to mention here that Prime Minister Shehbaz Sharif had launched a three-day nationwide polio eradication drive by administering polio drops to the children on Sunday.

The prime minister had said about 20 cases of polio were reported from Waziristan, but due to consistent efforts, these were restricted and controlled and did not spread to other parts.

PM Sharif also lauded those frontline workers and law enforcement agencies personnel who had laid down their lives for achieving the objective and embraced shahadat.

PM Shehbaz Sharif also expressed his gratitude to the WHO, stakeholders, related departments, law enforcement personnel and the daughters of the nation for their continuing efforts and commitments.


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