LAHORE - The Punjab government has started distribution of motorcycles among vaccinators and other EPI staff in the province.

Punjab Health Services Director General Dr Zahid Pervaiz said this while delivering keys to vaccinators at a ceremony on Wednesday. As many as 900 motorcycles are being delivered this week.

In a bid to facilitate the frontline workers and equip them with adequate resources, the government is providing motorcycles to all vaccinators in 3522 Union Councils of the province.

“The vaccinators have to travel long distances and the step will go a long way in achieving at least 90 per cent routine immunization coverage in the province. The vaccinators have already been provided with android-based smart phones that have tailor-made applications for date reporting,” the DG said on the occasion.

“In the first phase, the top performers on E-vaccs are being given motorcycles. Gradually, all will get motorcycles,” Dr Zahid said. He also expressed gratitude to Atlas Honda for supporting the cause of immunization in the country by providing another 90 motorcycles. The health department had originally placed the order of 900 motorcycles. Atlas Honda announced a reduction in prices of the motorcycles afterwards and as a goodwill gesture, the company decided to provide extra 90 motorcycles, even though the order was placed a few months earlier. The company had written to the department that even though the purchase order was received well before the price reduction, the “company has decided to pass the benefit to the department for a noble cause.”

Another lot of 1645 motorcycles is due next month and the third will be delivered within the next few months so that no one is missed out.

Dr Zahid Pervaiz said that all out efforts were made to facilitate the staff with the sole objective of immunizing every child. “Whereas we are providing the best available resources to the EPI staff, the onus lies now on the workers to serve with dedication and commitment to achieve the desired results,” he said. He said polio had dented Pakistan’s image globally and all efforts were being directed towards achieving the dream of a polio-free Pakistan. “With commitment, we are nearing its endgame. This would be our legacy to our next generation,” he added.