The UAE-Pakistan Assistance Programme, UAE PAP, announced that it has vaccinated 12,144,323 Pakistani children under five years old against polio from 17th to 26th August, 2020, in a nationwide campaign to vaccinate to 12,788,000 children as part of the Initiative of His Highness Sheikh Mohamed bin Zayed Al Nahyan for Global Polio Eradication.
UAE PAP said the second exceptional anti-polio campaign has achieved 95 percent success despite the challenge posed by the proliferation of the coronavirus, COVID-19.
UAE-PAP Director Abdullah Khalifa Al Ghafli stated that the UAE Polio Campaign in Pakistan is being implemented as part of the initiative of His Highness Sheikh Mohammed bin Zayed Al Nahyan for Global Polio Eradication.
This initiative is part of the UAE’s humanitarian approach in cooperation with international organisations and institutions to provide humanitarian and health assistance to needy and poor communities and peoples, and to support global efforts to eradicate polio and reduce its incidence by a large percentage in the countries targeted by the initiative, namely the Islamic Republic of Pakistan and the Islamic Republic of Afghanistan.
The number of cases recorded this year in Pakistan has reached 68, especially in areas where children are deemed the most threatened and vulnerable to infection with the virus, he noted.
The geographical scope of the campaign included 88 of the difficult and high-risk areas in Khyber Pakhtunkhwa and Federally Administered Tribal Area, Balochistan region, Punjab region, and Sindh region, with the participation of more than 82,000 members consisting of doctors, observers and members of vaccination teams, and more than 20,000 protection and security personnel and management and coordination teams.
Al Ghafli explained that this campaign was carried out with modern methods and with high preventive standards, including training courses to qualify the teams to perform the task in light of field challenges and risks related to their protection and safety, and to ensure the safety of children targeted by vaccination from being infected by the coronavirus.
Preventive measures were directed at parents regarding sterilising their hands before vaccinating their children, and distributing free masks.
The UAE vaccination campaign began in 2014 and until August 2020 managed to administer 468,443,542 doses of vaccination against polio to more than 86 million Pakistani children.