MANSEHRA: The health department of Khyber Pakhtunkhwa on Wednes­day initiated an inquiry into the death of a child allegedly caused by polio vaccine in Mansehra district.

“We have collected...fluid from abdomen of the child whose death according to his family was caused by polio vaccine and these samples will be examined at diagnostic laboratory,” Dr Shahzad Ali Khan, the district health officer, told reporters.

Naeem Shah, 3, was taken to the King Abdullah Teaching Hospital where doctors declared him dead.

According to his family, he was normal but fell unconscious after the health department’s vaccinating team administered him polio drops in the morning.

The child’s body was handed over to family members on completion of medico-legal formalities.

Dr Shahzad told reporters that the child was not allergy-prone to polio vaccine as he was receiving drops since his birth, “but even then we are investigating what caused his death”.

“It would be premature to say that his death was caused by polio vaccine as other children of that specific locality were also administered polio drops from that same vial,” he said.

Dr Shahzad said that a team of senior doctors had been constituted to examine the cause of the death.

Published in Dawn, April 25th, 2019