Helmand begins administering IPV to eradicate polio
LASHKARGAH (Pajhwok): Officials in southern Helmand province on Monday said they had started administering the Inactivated Polio Vaccine (IPV) to children for the first time.
Public Health Director Dr. Anayatullah Ghafari told a gathering held in this regard here that before polio drops would be given to children only, but they would now be administered the PPV injections as well as part of the new polio campaign.
He asked people to bring their children to nearby health facilities for the injections.
They have trained 120 persons who would administer the new vaccines to children at 66 health centres, immunity department head at the public health department, Dr. Abdul Ahad Hazim, said.
“The new Inactivated Polio Vaccine (IPV) would be administered in three phases. Twice to children aged 2.5 months in drop forms and for a third time through injection when these children reach the age of one year,” he said, adding the injections had good results worldwide.
Experts say though it does not kill the virus, IPV enhances the immune system of a child against the disease if he or she is already hosting the virus
“Polio vaccination is only difficult in areas where the war is going on,” Dr. Hazim said, adding:” neither the government nor the Taliban prevent the vaccination, but only war prevents the campaign.”
Since March 22, 2015, one positive case of polio was surfaced in the Khanshin district of Helamnd, he said.
On September 30, Public Health Minister Dr. Ferozuddin Feroz formally introduced the Inactivated Polio Vaccine (IPV) into the schedule of routine vaccinations programme for all children under the age of one year.
The campaign is part of the Afghan government’s ongoing efforts to eradicate polio and strengthen routine immunization. The vaccine is now available free of charge at all health facilities in the country.
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