LAHORE, May 29: The Lahore High Court on Wednesday ordered the Punjab Health Department to submit a detailed report on the measures taken to control measles during the last three years.

The court also directed the health department to take effective measures on a war footing to control the epidemic and preserve the vaccine as per international standards.

Earlier, Health Director General Dr Tanvir Ahmad stated that funds had been provided for vaccine and Rs243 million spent on anti-measles campaign in Lahore.

He said measles fatality rate was five per cent in the world whereas 2.5 per cent in Asia, but it was only 0.8 per cent in Pakistan. He said the anti-measles vaccine used by the government met the international standard.

The court directed the DG to take extraordinary measures to protect children from becoming prey to measles.

The court will resume further hearing on June 11.

Judicial Activism Panel Chairman Azhar Siddique filed the petition and submitted that frequent deaths of children due to measles was the outcome of low coverage of vaccination among children in the country which had ultimately led to a national failure.

He said there was inability and incapacity of health personnel in hospitals and in field to treat post measles complications such as pneumonia, post measles encephalitis and diarrhea.

The petitioner prayed that the government authorities be directed to file justified and comprehensive reports regarding their failure and consequent deaths of children. He sought strict action against the responsible authorities.

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