Pakistan has reported a one year free from any new Polio cases recorded with the last infection being registered on January 27, 2021.
To formally consider the disease eliminated from a nation, the country must be polio-free for three years straight.
Meanwhile, Pakistan’s version of the Taliban has become inspired ever since the Afghan Taliban took over in the neighboring country, regularly attacking polio teams.
The virus is spread through feces and saliva, and has historically flourished in the unclear frontiers between the two countries. Nigeria officially eliminated the wild variant of the disease in 2020, which left only Pakistan and Afghanistan as the two countries where it is endemic.
Pakistan has been running anti-polio drives since 1994. Up to 260,000 vaccinators stage regular streams of regional inoculation campaigns. However, on the borders of the country, the teams are often treated with skepticism and mistrust. Locals have created multiple theories ranging from western conspiracy, to infertility causing vaccine doses.
A large chunk of the regional population believes that the polio vaccination teams are spies. The belief has gained support since the killing of Osama Bin Laden in 2011, whose hideout was revealed to the United States by a vaccine worker.