According to health officials, Pakistan is witnessing an improvement in the polio crisis and the number of cases has declined this year.
This is mainly due to the military’s assistance in dispensing polio vaccines to far-flung areas, especially those which were inaccessible earlier due to militant groups.
The World Health Organization (WHO) has also reported that there have been 24 cases of polio since January this year, which translates to a decline of over 70 percent from last year, when the number was as high as 84.
Unfortunately, Pakistan is among the leading countries in terms of polio, and saw a record 306 cases of the disease last year. This was mainly due to the ongoing law and order situation in the country, where militant groups made it impossible for polio vaccinators to work.
Those working in the programme were also victims of attacks, the likes of which claimed around 80 lives since late 2012.
However, now the improving situation was confirmed by WHO’s senior coordinator, Elias Durry, who stated, “compared to last year, this year polio cases in Pakistan have been 70 per cent decreased”.
Rana Muhammad Safdar, a senior official at the Pakistan National Institute of Health also spoke positively about Pakistan’s polio situation, saying, “In 2013 and 2014 the programme was under pressure, but in 2015 the virus is under pressure”.