Punjab has deployed polio teams at key transit sites to ensure vaccination of children travelling with their families to celebrate Eidul Fitr in their native towns.
Keeping in view the magnitude of movement, polio teams have been deployed at 20 key sites in 14 high risk districts. Districts where polio teams have been deployed include Lahore, Rawalpindi, Faisalabad, Multan, Dera Ghazi Khan, Rajanpur, Gujranwala, Gujrat, Sialkot, Bahawalpur, Mianwali, Bhakkar, Attock and Rahim Yar Khan.
Most of the sites where polio teams have been deployed include railway stations and bus stands. Teams have also been deployed at tourist destination of Fort Monroe.
The teams will perform their duties for one month in two shifts and ensure that no child remained unvaccinated.
The teams deployed at these sites are in addition to the human resource deployed at permanent polio transit sites set up at inter-provincial entry and exit sites as well as international airports.
Head of the polio programme Mr Khizer Afzaal Chaudhary chaired a meeting on Tuesday to finalise deployment of polio teams and locations of the special transit sites.
Speaking on the occasion the polio programme head expressed the hope that deployment of polio teams will be helpful in preventing polio virus reinfection.
The polio progamme head expressed his satisfaction that all the teams deployed during Eid holidays have been given orientation. He reviewed a comprehensive monitoring plan submitted by the EOC team and gave a go ahead. He directed the officials to ensure that polio teams are properly monitored as per the devised plan.
The EOC head appealed to the parents to cooperate with polio teams at the transit sites. “as understood people are travelling to their native towns to celebrate Eid with their loved ones. But it is also necessary that children are given polio drops when they are travelling.
The administration of drops will help prevent polio virus circulation from one place to another”, the EOC head underlined.
Punjab is polio free for the last over two years. But polio environmental samples collected from two sites tested positive in Lahore this year in January. The positive samples indicate that polio still remains a threat to children unless it is eradicated from last two endemic countries including Pakistan and Afghanistan.
Pakistan reported a polio case from Bannu this year which is located in the south Khyber Pakhtunkhwa region where most of the cases were reported last year.