AT News Report
KABUL: Two new polio cases have surfaced separately in capital city of Tirinkot and Chora district of southern Uruzgan province, a statement from the relevant ministry said Sunday.
A 30-month-old child and another six-month-old infant were permanently paralyzed as a result of the polio virus.
According to a statement issued by the Ministry of Public Health (MoPH), the total number of polio cases in 2019 reached 15 with the two new cases, saying all of these cases had been reported from inaccessible areas.
“Fourteen out of the 15 polio cases this year have been reported from the southern region of Afghanistan,” the statement said, adding “Seven positive cases came from Uruzgan, five from Helmand and two other from Kandahar.”
Only one out of 12 polio cases was reported from eastern Kunar province while the rest happened in the southern zone.
“Access to health services is the right of every citizen of the country,” said Dr. Ferozuddin Feroz, the Minister of Public Health.
“We are deeply concerned about the increasing polio cases and the number of children who still don’t have consistent and proper access to vaccination,” he added.
He said the virus could spread further in the country and more children would be affected and paralyzed by polio virus.
He called upon people to “work together and protect innocent children against polio and facilitate a safe and secure environment for our frontline workers in order to enable them administer vaccine drops to children in every nook and cranny of the country.”
Polio is a crippling and potentially fatal infectious disease. There is no cure and the vaccine is the only safe and effective way to protect children.
The polio vaccine is safe and harmless – for newborn children whether they are sick or not. It is very important that newborns and sick children get the vaccine because they may have lower immunity which makes them more susceptible to the virus.
Polio vaccination has also been strongly endorsed by national and global Islamic scholars.