Three-Year-Old in Bannu Paralyzed for Life Due to Polio!

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by Omama Anwar

02-08-2023
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Bannu witnessed wild poliovirus once again as a three-year-old boy has been paralyzed for life. 

Despite ongoing efforts by the government to eradicate the virus from the country, polio remains a persistent threat, particularly in areas with limited access to healthcare and unsanitary conditions.

 

The child's paralysis began on July 11. Pakistan National Polio Laboratory confirmed the case officially at the National Institute of Health in Islamabad on Tuesday, August 1. 

It marks the second reported polio case in Bannu this year.

Abdul Qadir Patel, Federal Health Minister, expressed concern over the situation. He emphasized that the affected child's life has been forever altered by a preventable disease. 

Notably, no child in Pakistan has been paralyzed by polio since 2021, except for seven districts in southern Khyber Pakhtunkhwa (KP), where wild polio transmission continues to be endemic. 

These districts include North Waziristan, South Waziristan Upper, South Waziristan Lower, DI Khan, Bannu, Tank, and Lakki Marwat.

Federal Health Secretary, Iftikhar Shallwani, stressed the importance of vaccination in preventing lifelong disabilities and urged parents to ensure their children receive the polio vaccine. 

Dr. Shahzad Baig, Coordinator for the National Emergency Operations Centre, affirmed their commitment to interrupting wild polio transmission despite the challenges faced.

In 2022, Pakistan reported 20 polio cases, with the majority recorded in North Waziristan, Lakki Marwat, and South Waziristan. The fight against polio continues, with vaccination campaigns aiming to protect every child from this debilitating disease.