ISLAMABAD: The first nationwide polio vaccination campaign of 2024 began in the country on Monday to protect children from paralytic polio.

More than 44.3 million children under five years of age will be given oral polio drops during the five-day-long campaign, which will continue until Jan 12.

Children in Lakki Marwat and South Waziristan Upper and Lower will be vaccinated from Jan 15 to 19, while the campaign in Tank will be held between Jan 15 and 21 and in Dera Ismail Khan from Jan 22 to Jan 28.

Over 400,000 vaccinators have been tasked with administering drops to children at their doorstep. In Punjab, 22.6m children will be vaccinated, while 10.3m children in Sindh, 7.5m children in Khyber Pakhtunkhwa (KP),

2.6m children in Balochistan, while 720,000 children in Azad Jammu and Kashmir (AJK), 280,000 children in Gilgit-Baltistan (GB) and 420,000 children will be vaccinated in Islamabad.

Dr Shahzad Baig, coordinator of the National Eme­rgency Operations Center for Polio Eradication, has urged parents to open their doors to vaccinators so their children can receive this essential vaccine.

Published in Dawn, January 9th, 2024

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