(MENAFN - Afghanistan Times) AT News Report
KABUL: One new polio case is just confirmed in southern
Kandahar province, days after nationwide campaign against the crippling disease
kicked off on Monday.
A 60-month-old boy from Ghorak district is infected by the
poliovirus. This is the second case reported in 2019, highlighting the ongoing
risks of polio and the need for continued immunization, health officials said.
'From today, polio vaccination teams will visit 5.8 million
children under five years old in 195 high-risk districts of 21 provinces of
West, Central and Southeast regions of Afghanistan,' said a statement issued by
Ministry of Public Health (MoPH).
The Minister of Public Health Ferozuddin Feroz urged Afghan
people to take the situation seriously and called on people to open doors to
vaccinators in the upcoming campaign.
'We already have two cases reported from Kandahar this
year. While there is polio anywhere in this country, all children are at
risk. Polio will continue to fight for survival. Immunization is the only way
to put an end to this virus. We urge the people of Kandahar and across the
country to step up, open your doors and get your children vaccinated. We don't
want to see any more children paralyzed by polio, and we need to work together
to stop polio once and for all.'
Polio is incurable and can paralyze children for life. The
only way to prevent polio virus is to vaccinate all children with two drops of
polio vaccine every time it is offered. Children are better protected with
every additional dose of the vaccination. Repeated vaccination helps to build
strong immunity of your child and the whole community.
The vaccination campaign will take place from 18 - 22
February 2019. Parents should ensure their children are home and
available to be vaccinated. All children under five should receive the
polio vaccine, including children who are asleep, visiting other homes and
newborns, even if they have been immunized in the past.Children who miss
the vaccination should visit their local health centre as soon as possible,
where the vaccine is available free of charge. The polio vaccine is safe, even
for sick and newborn children. It is very important these children get the
vaccine, because they have lower immunity which makes them more susceptible to
the virus. Polio vaccination has also been strongly endorsed by national and
global Islamic scholars, the statement added.
Every country in the world except Pakistan, Nigeria, and
Afghanistan has ended polio, highlighting the fact that the strategy and
vaccines work Twenty-one Afghan children were infected by polio in 2018.