KARACHI  - Around 260,000 under five children would be administered oral polio vaccines during a small scale campaign being resumed in selected towns of Karachi from July 20, said a spokesman of Emergency Operation Center (EmOC) for Polio Eradication in Sindh here on Tuesday.

The campaign being revived after an unavoidable interruption in the polio vaccination efforts, due to COVID-19 pandemic, would be initially conducted in Baldia. Orangi, North Nazimabad, Liaqutabad and SITE towns of the megapolis.

It was said to be followed by wider campaigns across the province during rest of the month of the current year.  Reminding that the campaign scheduled for next Monday would be the first immunization campaign in the province, since the infectious disease hit the country in March this year, the spokesman said all necessary precautions, with regard to safety of the children as well as general public against COVID, would be ensured during the exercise, in accordance to WHO guidelines.

“Our workers have been provided with sanitizers, masks, gloves and other essential support with due care to spend minimum time at the door stops and also to ensure that children were not directly handled by them, nor they would be knocking the doors or interact closely with the parents,” said the EmOC spokesman.

In order to make up the gap in the campaigns he requested all the parents to cooperate with polio teams and give their under five children two drops of the polio vaccine every time they were offered.

He emphasized that the benefits of vaccination far outweigh the risk of transmission of the infection adding that the door to door campaign would also be utilized to raise awareness about COVID-19 prevention besides helping mothers to acquire other essential vaccinations along with antenatal care services.

Since the COVID-19 outbreak no immunization campaign, including that of OPV, could be conducted leaving an immunity gap among the kids that needed to be urgently addressed for their quality survival as well as existence.