Detection of poliovirus in the sewage is very alarming: PMA

MN Report 10:02 AM, 4 Aug, 2022
Detection of poliovirus in the sewage is very alarming: PMA

KARACHI-An emergent meeting of Pakistan Medical Association (PMA) was held at PMA House, Karachi, to discuss the worsening Polio situation in the country. 

The meeting was presided over by Dr Salma Aslam Kundi, President of the PMA Centre, via video connection. Dr S.M.Qaisar Sajjad, Hon. Secretary General of PMA Centre, Dr Qazi Wasiq, Hon. Treasurer of PMA Centre, Dr Syed Tipu Sultan, Former President of PMA Centre, Dr Mirza Ali Azhar, Former President of PMA Sindh, Dr Sonia Naqvi, President of PMA Karachi, Dr Abdul Ghafoor Shoro, General Secretary of PMA Karachi also joined the meeting.

Participants at the conference voiced worry over the results of seven cities' positive environmental samples suggesting the presence of the Polio virus: Islamabad, Lahore, Rawalpindi, Peshawar, Bannu, Nowshera, and Swat.

The discovery of poliovirus in sewage samples is quite frightening. The emergence of polio cases in these seven cities would increase the country's total number of polio cases.

Pakistan was polio-free for fifteen months until April 2022, when fourteen cases were recorded. It appears that Pakistanis are once again on the verge of eliminating the transmission of wild poliovirus. Now is the time for the administration to devise a flawless emergency plan to combat the poliovirus.

PMA argues that parents should be more informed about poliovirus and its effects, which might leave their child with a disability, which would be extremely detrimental to society. 

In this respect, a vigorous positive awareness campaign should be launched via print, electronic, and social media, and a 30- to 60-second documentary should be shown to inform the public about the dangers of the polio virus. It will also raise awareness about the significance of the polio vaccination. 

Government should primarily persuade the public that the vaccination is highly efficient in eradicating polio and is entirely safe. Government should also try to dispel all misunderstandings regarding polio drops held by the general people. The information should be communicated with such clarity to the public that parents bring their children to vaccination centres for polio drops.

PMA also recommended that all stakeholders participate in the awareness effort. Political leaders, religious leaders, physicians, educators, artists, and athletes may all play a crucial part in this battle. General Physicians can play a vital role in the eradication of polio.

They further recommended that the government make it necessary for parents to vaccinate their children under the age of five against polio and that vaccination certificates be issued to children and shown at the time of school entry and elsewhere.



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