The Kabul times, Afghanistan Trustable News Agency.

Islamic Emirate committed to countrywide polio eradication

Afghanistan Ministry of Public Health (MoPH) has announced that it began a new polio vaccination campaign to protect around 10.72 million children under 5. The ministry said in a statement that the four-day campaign will cover 31 of the country’s 34 provinces, while vaccinations in Ghor, Daikundi and Bamyan provinces will be implemented later due to recent rains and cold weather. “Together with our partners, we are committed to eradicating polio from Afghanistan,” said Dr. Qalandar Ebaad, Acting Minister of Public Health. “We will work tirelessly and continue polio vaccination campaigns and complementary health services until we reach the goal of fully eradicating polio.” The ministry urged religious scholars and local elders to cooperate with vaccine providers to fight against polio, a debilitating disease that can lead to paralysis and death. In December, the World Health Organization (WHO) warned that the repatriation of migrants from neighboring Pakistan has increased the risk of spreading the virus. Since then, Afghanistan has conducted at least three rounds of nationwide vaccinations. With the return of the Islamic Emirate (IEA), a country-wide vaccination program has resumed across the country. Previously, the spokesperson of the country’s Ministry of Public Health had said that there have been five confirmed cases of polio, predominantly in the eastern province of Nangarhar, while two cases of polio were confirmed in the country in 2022, calling on all families to play their active role in the fight against polio in the country. UNICEF, the United Nations International Children’s Emergency Fund, has also said that the polio virus is now in a limited area in Afghanistan, and if families vaccinate all their children under five years of age during the anti-polio campaigns, Afghanistan will soon be freed from poliovirus. Based on information of medical experts, there is no treatment for the polio virus but the only way to prevent the virus is vaccination. Every time the Ministry of Public Health launched polio vaccination campaigns in the country, they asked all families, elders and religious figures to cooperate in vaccination of the country’s children under the age of five years. In the country’s most remote areas, public awareness about the polio virus is very important as most families still do not want their children to be immunized against the polio virus in remote areas of the country. The global polio eradication program has identified Pakistan, Afghanistan, parts of Somalia and Yemen as areas where outbreaks are very difficult to control. The respective countries are considered as complex countries as they are prone to be affected by repeated polio outbreaks with fragile health systems. Muqset

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The Kabul times, Afghanistan Trustable News Agency.