De­tec­tion of four po­lio cases is alarm­ing: Qaim

Pakistan Observer - - KARACHI CITY - CITY RE­PORTER

KARACHI—Sindh Chief Min­is­ter Syed Qaim Ali Shah has said that his gov­ern­ment was work­ing hard to erad­i­cate po­lio but due to dif­fer­ent rea­sons due re­sults have not been achieved so far. It is quite alarm­ing and painful for me that in north­ern parts of Sindh po­lio cases have been de­tected for which emer­gent mea­sures must be taken to con­trol the sit­u­a­tion.

This he said while pre­sid­ing over a spe­cial meet­ing on po­lio, pro­vi­sion of wa­ter and on the clean­li­ness is­sues of the city here this evening, says a state­ment here on Sun­day.

Asifa Bhutto Zar­dari spe­cially at­tended the meet­ing. Oth­ers who at­tended the meet­ing in­clude MNAAzra Pechuho, pro­vin­cial min­is­ters Jam Me­htab Da­har, Jam Khan Shoro and rep­re­sen­ta­tives of health, lo­cal gov­ern­ment, KMC.

The meet­ing was told that four po­lio cases have been de­tected in 2016, of them two in Shikarpur, one in Ja­cob­a­bad and one in Gadap. It was ob­served that in­te­rior ar­eas of Sindh were over all on track with pock­ets of virus cir­cu­lat­ing in North­ern dis­tricts, spe­cially Larkana di­vi­sion (Ja­cob­a­bad, Sikarpur and Sukkur).

The meet­ing was in­formed that the en­vi­ron­men­tal sam­ples off and on were found pos­i­tive in Gadap town but April was the only for­tu­nate month in which sam­ples were found neg­a­tive. “If the virus keeps cir­cu­lat­ing in some ar­eas it means there is risk of spread of the virus,” said MNA Dr Azra Pechuho.

Pro­gramme Man­ager of Anti-Po­lio pro­gramme Dr Us­man Chachar said that low pop­u­la­tion im­mu­nity, low rou­tine im­mu­niza­tion, high num­ber of po­lio vac­cine re­fusals in Karachi and zero dose rou­tine im­mu­niza­tion are some of the ma­jor is­sues in the prov­ince.

Sindh Chief Min­is­ter Syed Qaim Ali Shah di­rected the Chief Sec­re­tary to del­e­gate pow­ers to com­mis­sion­ers for prompt ac­tion and ac­count­abil­ity in re­spect of po­lio cam­paigns.

He or­dered is­suance of no­ti­fi­ca­tion of di­vi­sional task forces for Karachi, Sukkur and Larkana for over­sight and man­age­ment. Chief Min­is­ter also is­sued di­rec­tives for es­tab­lish­ment of emer­gency Re­sponse Unit at Larkana and tech­ni­cal sup­port unit at Karachi.

“I want the Health De­part­ment, di­vi­sional and district ad­min­is­tra­tion to col­lec­tively fo­cus on rou­tine im­mu­niza­tion and syn­ergy with po­lio erad­i­ca­tion ac­tiv­i­ties,” he said.

Talk­ing about in­te­rior ar­eas of Sindh, the Chief Min­is­ter stressed on the need of vac­ci­na­tion of mov­ing pop­u­la­tion at parks, trains and at bus stops and more fo­cus may be made on high risk pop­u­la­tion move­ment to and from KPK and FATA.

Asifa Bhutto Zar­dari said that fre­quent meet­ings are not enough but “you have to be fo­cused and re­sult-ori­ented,” she said and added “We should make our­selves ac­count­able in the sense that what re­sults we have achieved from our ef­forts made so far.

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