PESHAWAR: Two more polio cases were reported in Khyber Pakhtunkhwa on Friday, taking the total number of polio cases to three in the province this year.
Senior officials of the provincial Health Department told The News that one male child tested positive with polio in the provincial capital and another case was reported from Hangu district.
The child in Peshawar was identified as Jareer, son of Waliullah. He is 21-month old and belongs to a religious family living in Peshawar’s Haider Colony in Akhunabad.
The family had refused polio vaccines to the child, according to Health Department officials.
“His father belongs to a religious group that is strongly opposing polio vaccination among their followers. They had refused polio vaccines to this child who unfortunately became victim of the crippling poliovirus,” said an official of the Health Department.
Pleading anonymity, he said the family and the locality they were living in was known for parents refusing polio vaccination.The second child was a seven-month old baby girl, Naureen Bibi, who was the daughter of Ajab Khan.
She was stated to be an Afghan refuge living in Mulla Musa Jan village in Ganjyano Killay in Hangu.The Health Department officials said she had received three doses of the oral polio vaccine (OPV) during routine immunisation of the Expanded Programme on Immunisation (EPI).
She was also administered the polio drops during Supplementary Immunisation Activity (SIA), but it couldn’t save this Afghan refugee girl from falling prey to the paralysing poliovirus.According to health experts, though the girl had received OPV, her immunity was weak.
They said it showed that poliovirus was circulating in the vicinity, where the girl was living. “The campaign quality was satisfactory, but immunity of the child was not very good to resist against the poliovirus,” opined a health expert.Before these two polio cases, one case was reported from Nowshera district, where an Afghan boy, who too had received polio vaccines, but even then became victim of the poliovirus.Besides, these three polio cases reported from Khyber Pakhtunkhwa, one each was diagnosed in Karachi and Quetta.