World Health Organization (WHO) Director-General Margaret Chan, MD, said that the organization will continue its support to boost polio eradication efforts in Pakistan.
Chan made this commitment during talks with Pakistani health officials, while visiting Pakistan at the end of October to review the progress of health relief and recovery efforts in flood-affected parts of the country. The WHO delegation met with Khyber Pakhtunkhwa Chief Minister Amir Haider Hoti to launch a polio vaccination campaign that aims to vaccinate 30 million children nationwide.
“Polio eradication is a major concern, as 97 cases of polio had been reported since January this year by Pakistani health authorities,” she said. “Half of these cases are living in tribal areas where the security situation restricts access to healthcare for many children, including for polio vaccination…. The devastating floods have…made the polio situation even more challenging.”