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NNWN / Islamabad, 2015-09-07
Pakistan continues to have poor record of polio vaccination despite government making all out efforts to eradicate.Pakistan's Balochistan province has a poor record as far as polio vaccination is concerned. The province has reported over 4,000 cases of polio vaccination refusal.Religious beliefs, poverty and lack of awareness are among many reasons for polio vaccination refusal.
The Dawn online quoted Dr. Syed Saifur Rehman, coordinator of the Emergency Operation Cell in Balochistan, and said that  the list of parents refusing vaccine for their children in Quetta, Pishin and Killa Abdullah districts has been thoroughly documented. Infact, a meeting was held to review the investigation of newly-emerged polio case in Quetta which brought the total number of cases in Balochistan to five in 2015. Rehman who chaired the meeting, later said that religious beliefs have stopped people from polio vaccination, regardless of their educational, financial background. He quoted a medical technician who refused to administer polio drops to his five year old daughter.
"It is very tragic that a medical technician in Quetta has been refusing vaccination for his children. It has resulted in a life-long paralysis of his daughter," Dr. Rehman told reporters.He said it is unimaginable that a medical technician who often deals with suffering patients could refuse administration of polio vaccine to his children. "I think it is an offence," he said.The father should have been jailed because he was the sole person responsible for paralysing his five-year-old daughter, according to Balochistan's ECO coordinator."The fight against the polio is very difficult and we have to win this war," Rehman said. Rehman said there were 44 percent refusal cases out of total 25 polio virus cases reported in 2014 in Balochistan, while this year three out of five reported cases are refusals which make more than 50 percent. The government had declared a polio emergency throughout the province to root out the crippling virus from the region.