The anti-polio campaign in Sindh will begin from December 16.
It will run till December 22 and target nine million children under five years of age. The campaign will immunise 2.3 million children in Karachi alone.
A meeting to review the readiness of the campaign was held at the Emergency Operations Centre Sindh on Thursday. It was chaired by Health and Population Welfare Minister Dr Azra Fazal Pechuho.
“I request all parents to please vaccinate their children under five years of age with the polio vaccine every time it is offered. This is the only way to eradicate polio and save children from lifelong disability. The virus is present in the environment and it would be heart-breaking to see a child getting paralysed because of refusing the vaccine,” she implored.
The health minister said gaps in previous campaigns had allowed the polio virus to circulate once again in the environment. Sindh recorded 14 cases of polio this year, of which six have been reported from Karachi.
The upcoming season from December to June is a low transmission season during which the virus can be controlled with regular immunisation campaigns. In this regard the provincial health minister urged the deputy commissioners to play an active role.
The meeting was also attended by all district commissioners and district health officers of Sindh, National Strategic Advisory Group for PEI Member Shahnaz Wazir Ali, EOC Sindh Coordinator Rehan Baloch, EOC Sindh Technical Focal Person Dr Ahmed Ali Shaikh, core team members and provincial team leads from WHO and UNICEF all attended the meeting.