Polio Campaign Mishandling in Pakistan
International donors have shown extreme resentment with concerns over the polio campaign in Pakistan. In a meeting with Prime Minister Nawaz Sharif in New York, World Health Organization representatives highlighted this point towards overcoming the situation that has been crippled due to the recent terror attacks on polio health workers across the country. They unanimously iterated on the appointment of important people all over the areas where polio vaccination is inevitable. According to the source, the important person is deemed an official, who takes the international agency’s matters and supervises the campaign throughout the country. Pakistani Government has yet to appoint an important individual even at the federal level, which has been delayed for years. International agencies have shown concerns that terror attacks seemed successful in undermining polio eradication in the country. In addition, agencies around the world are now also facing difficulties towards running their polio cells.
The World Health Organization’s representatives have asked PM Nawaz Sharif that polio campaigns for eradication of the disease should be implemented with complete provincial unity and understanding. Regional Director Dr. Ala Alawan, expressed reservations over the provincial efforts, has asked to make polio eradication a priority agenda to all stakeholders in the country. PM Nawaz Sharif stressed on the need of civil-military coordination mechanism to score out polio. Minister of State for National Health Services, Saira Afzal Tarar briefed the meeting about Pakistani strategy so far. She satisfied all international stakeholders by presenting a fact sheet in which she told that only 28 polio cases have been reported for the current year as compared to 1994 when there were 2600 cases.