The fourth round of the national polio immunization campaign in Afghanistan is scheduled to start Monday and will be synchronized with Pakistan to improve cross-border polio eradication efforts.
According to a statement issued by UNICEF, the campaign will run until Thursday and aims to reach 9.9 million children aged 0-59 months across the country.
In the South and East regions, and provinces of Paktia and Ghazni in the South East, Ghor in the West, and Balkh in the North, the campaign will run a week later, from 20 to 23 December.
This is the second campaign to reach children in areas previously inaccessible by the polio program.
The November 2021 campaign delivered polio vaccinations to 8.5 million children under the age of five, including 2.4 million children who were vaccinated for the first time in over three years, UNICEF said.
“We are intensifying efforts to reach the maximum number of children across the country, but we need sustained access to rapidly build immunity against polio, especially in areas we have not been able to reach in the last few years,” said Dr Dapeng Luo, WHO Representative in Afghanistan.
“The November campaign was a massive leap forward and the upcoming campaign will further strengthen the progress we are making. Six more campaigns are planned for 2022 and we must ensure they are implemented timely and reach all children,” he said.
Four wild poliovirus type 1 cases have been reported in the country so far. The first WPV1 case of 2021 was reported in January 2021 from Ghazni province in the Southeast region, while the other three cases were reported in October and November from Kunduz province.The post Almost 10 million children targeted in national polio immunization campaign first appeared on Ariana News.