PESHAWAR: Number of polio cases has gone significantly down in 2015 compared to 2014 when Fata recorded highest number of cases.

This was disclosed at a polio programme review meeting on Tuesday chaired by Fata additional chief secretary Mohammad Aslam Qambo, according to a statement.

Secretary law and order, planning and development Shakeel Qadir Khan, secretary social sector Waqar ul Hassan, agency surgeons and officials of Frontier Regions attended the meeting.

The participants pledged to speed up immunisation campaign to rid the Fata of poliomyelitis during current year.

They were informed that only 16 polio cases in Fata and Frontier Regions were reported in 2015 against 179 cases in 2014, as number of polio-endemic tehsils had been cut down to 8 in 2015 from 15 in 2014.

It was informed that the inaccessibility was reduced from 31 per cent in 2014 to only two per cent in 2015. The meeting also discussed the programme challenges and directed to tackle them to help eradicate the poliovirus from the region.

Fata additional chief secretary Aslam Qambo appreciated the stakeholders for substantial reduction in polio cases and improving the quality of anti-polio campaigns. He directed agency surgeons to focus on inaccessible areas in coordination with security agencies. He said the programme teams at all levels should continue working hard to achieve the programme objectives.

Published in Dawn, January 6th, 2016

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