Polio has been paralyzing children
across the globe for too long. The development of modern vaccine technology has
helped us slice that number by 99%, but that last 1% still remains. With
Pakistan being one of the last three countries with endemic Polio, and at the
risk of being the only reservoir, BioReach Society at ASAB has taken an
initiative to help eradicate polio from Pakistan with the formation of its
Polio Advocacy Campaign.
The aim of the campaign is to
empower the public with knowledge about the disease and efforts being made to
wipe it off the face of the Earth. Keeping in line with this agenda, on May 24,
Ms. Saria Younas from the World Health Organization was invited to shed some
light on the current state of Polio in Pakistan. Ms. Younas is currently the
Federal Campaign Support Officer for the Polio Eradication Initiative at WHO.
With the number of cases half of
what they were last year, the eradication efforts seem to be going in the right
direction. Various socio-political elements have however marred the
effectiveness of immunization campaigns in parts of KPK and Balochistan. In the
comments made by Ms. Younas at the event, she sounded hopeful regarding the
progress being made by immunization teams. The event ended with her commending
the effort and inviting the students of ASAB to act as third party observers
for the Polio immunization drives, in order to expose the team to the elements
of active campaigning.