Pakistan’s Polio Eradication Programme Joins Hands with the Survey of Pakistan for Improved Micro Planning


Islamabad, August 31, 2016: A solemn ceremony at the National Emergency Operations Centre (NEOC), a Memorandum of Understanding (MoU) was signed between officials of Survey of Pakistan (SoP), Ministry of Defence and the Polio Eradication Initiative to extend support and cooperation towards the development of modern geographic maps for use by the polio programme to improve micro planning and campaign execution.

NEOC Coordinator, Dr. Rana Muhammad Safdar, said that the project is part of programme’s efforts to reach and vaccinate each and every child during upcoming campaigns. The geo-spatial technology used by the SoP is a vital tool the programme can use to strengthen poliovirus surveillance, campaign planning, information management as well as the real time analysis. “It will provide an excellent means for the programme to visualize and analyze polio epidemiological data and in revealing trends that can help the programme deliver appropriate response” Dr. Safdar added. 

Under the MoU, high quality maps will be generated that will aid vaccinators and field teams to enhance their planning for campaigns and guide programme operations to ensure no child is missed by vaccination. Traditionally maps generated at the Union Council (UC) level, which are used by vaccinators to show which area each team will cover during the campaign, have been mostly hand-drawn sketches created by teams.

The new maps made available through SoP will also ensure the programme has access to updated maps to enable the implementation of activities under the National Emergency Action Plans (NEAP). The Initiative will be applied in six districts in the north of Sindh province: Sukkur, Ghotki, Kashmore, Jacobabad, Larkana and Shikarpur before being gradually introduced across other districts considered high-risk for poliovirus. 

Mr. Mehar Ali, Deputy Surveyor General, SoP said that this is a landmark agreement for the use of the technology, that has potential uses across different programmes and sectors.

Senator Ayesha Raza Farooq, the Prime Minister’s Focal Person for Polio Eradication termed the initiative a landmark step for utilizing the available modern technologies to strengthen Polio eradication efforts in Pakistan. The intervention would in fact be a long term contribution of the programme towards Pakistan’s health system providing a platform for the convergence of public health service delivery in the future.


(Sajid Hussain Shah)

PRO to Minister for NHSR&C