KABUL: The ministry of public health confirmed 303 cases of polio in 2020 across the country.
Wahidullah Mujroh, deputy health minister called commuting between the two sides of the Durand line as the main reason for the rapid spread of the disease in Afghanistan. He said that insecurity was a main obstacle before the anti-polio vaccination campaign. “The rapid spread of polio virus is another challenge,” he said Monday.
The Taliban disallow the vaccination teams to conduct the door to door immunization campaign in the areas under their control, saying that the children should be vaccinated in mosques.
Earlier, the health ministry said that 3.5 million children were deprived from polio vaccine across the country. Afghanistan and Pakistan are the only two countries where polio still remains as big challenge.
Farid Omari, an infectious disease specialist suggested that the polio vaccination should begin in Afghanistan and Pakistan at the same time to prevent the spread of the virus in the region. “This is an alarm for the children in Afghanistan,” he said. “The government and international organizations should take immediate steps.”
He said that the polio immunization campaign should be kicked off in the rural areas. The health ministry said that countering polio challenges in Afghanistan is its priority.