ISLAMABAD, JUNE 24, 2022 – An eight-month-old boy was paralyzed by wild polio, the Pakistan National Polio Laboratory has confirmed.   

The child had onset of paralysis on 9 June and belongs to Mir Ali (UC– 7) of North Waziristan, Khyber-Pakhtunkhwa. All 11 cases in Pakistan this year are from North Waziristan. Eight of these cases have emerged from Mir Ali alone.  

Emergency measures put in place by the Pakistan Polio Programme have so far contained the virus in the southern districts of Khyber-Pakhtunkhwa.

“We need the support of the whole country to end polio. If only all families give two drops of the polio vaccine to their child each time, we could save all children,” said Federal Health Minister Abdul Qadir Patel.

A polio campaign will begin in 67 districts of the country from Monday, 27 June. The campaign will be implemented in all union councils of the 25 districts at highest risk and in select union councils in the other 41 districts.

“A child should not have to suffer with lifelong paralysis from a disease that is entirely preventable. I urge all families to open their doors to polio workers,” the Health Minister added.

Note for the Editor:

Polio is a highly infectious disease caused by poliovirus mainly affecting children under the age of five years. It invades the nervous system and can cause paralysis or even death. While there is no cure for polio, vaccination is the most effective way to protect children from this crippling disease. Each time a child under the age of five is vaccinated, their protection against the virus is increased. Repeated immunisations have protected millions of children from polio, allowing almost all countries in the world to become polio-free, besides the two endemic countries of Pakistan and Afghanistan.

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