The total number of polio cases in Pakistan has risen up to 8 after the detection of 3 new cases in KP (Khyber Pakhtunkhwa) in the last 13 days.
The first three cases were reported in Balochistan in the first four months of the current year. The fourth was reported in Karachi, while fifth in Khyber Pakhtunkhwa during September. During the recent polio tests, stool samples of children who were suspected of suffering from this crippling disease were sent to National Institute of Health, Islamabad, where they were thoroughly examined.
Two samples tested positive and it was confirmed that the kids were suffering from Acute Flaccid Paralysis. A senior official dealing with polio eradication said that he was in a state of shock.
”Yes, it has caused panic. It is something really disturbing as we were celebrating the end of polio for two years, but with these three new cases, we are in a state of shock” – he said speaking to a local news source.
The officer, who wished to stay anonymous as he was not allowed to talk on media, said that they have run massive successful campaigns in tribal districts but the movement of the general public to and from Afghanistan has caused problems for the drive.
He said that it is a fact that it creates problems every single time as when they do genetic sequencing of the virus, it is traced back to Afghanistan. Same is the case with Afghanistan where the cases are traced back to Pakistan. Although it can’t be overlooked that Pakistan has shown immense improvement in the sector. Polio cases in the country dropped from 306 in 2014 to only 8 in 2018.
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