A seminar was conducted by World Health Organization (WHO) on Polio eradication, the Endgame Strategy in UHS Lahore. The theme of the seminar was “Polio the End Game Strategy” and was focused on polio eradication efforts by WHO in cooperation with National Emergency Action Plan (NEAP) which was launched by the Govt of Pakistan to implement WHO’s efforts in this regard. Seminar was attended by a large number of health care professionals, doctors, students and faculty members of University of Health Science (UHS) Lahore.
The Polio Eradication and Endgame Strategic Plan 2013-2018 was drawn up in response to the May 2012 World Health Assembly declaring the completion of poliovirus eradication to be a programmatic emergency for global public health. It was developed by the Global Polio Eradication Initiative (GPEI) in consultation with health care agencies, experts, national plans. According to this program all wild type and vaccine associated strains were to be eradicated until 2018 and the use of oral polio vaccine (OPV) must be stopped worldwide with new OPV which contains type 2 poliovirus (OPV type-2 ) and one dose of inactivated polio virus (IPV) must be introduced.
Seminar key note speakers which were Dr. Raul Bonifacio WHO team leader and Dr. Ujala Nayyar WHO surveillance officer for Punjab presented recent data and strategic achievements on the road to eradication of poliomyelitis.
WHO team leader Dr. Raul Bonifacio while presented the latest statistical report for the year 2016 to 2018 stating that cases of acute flaccid paralysis (AFP), have reduced to 1 in Pakistan until March 2018 and this was from Duki, Baluchistan, however the previous year WPV infected persons were eight (8). This was happened due to subsequent testing and supplementary environmental sampling from the environment targeting towards complete eradication. However Afghanistan is not yet achieved this target as it has 7 new cases of AFP for this year until now.
source: world health organization
WHO surveillance officer for Punjab Dr. Ujala Nayyar, while presenting notes to the audiences said ” Our workers went door to door they were abashed, taunted, misbehaved but teams continue to revisit houses where polio drops were not immunized, they traveled in deserts, hills and hard areas in order to immunize every child“. Question and answer session was also conducted at the end where audiences asked different questions related to eradication program.