Kathmandu, October 24
The Government of Nepal and different organisations have been working together to provide polio vaccine to each and every child of the country. However, a study shows that nearly 15 per cent of children below five years of age are not taken to polio immunisation booths set up by the government from time to time.
According to Dr Badri Raj Pandey, member secretary at Nepal National PolioPlus Committee, only 80 per cent children were recorded to have been administered the vaccine in Kathmandu Valley. “Children, especially in urban areas, are not taken to polio immunisation booths set up by the government as urban parents doubt the efficacy of vaccines distributed free of cost,” said Dr Pandey.
The World Health Organisation had certified Nepal as a polio free country in 2014. No polio case has been reported in the country since August 2010.
“Polio is highly infectious disease caused by virus, which can potentially cause lifelong paralysis among young children,” said Dr Pandey, adding, “There is no cure for polio and it is only seen in humans. It cannot be cured and can only be prevented through vaccination.”
Speaking at a press meet organised on the occasion World Polio Day, he advised parents to immunise their children. “There are two countries — Pakistan and Afghanistan — which have not yet been declared polio-free. Until and unless it is completely eradicated from the world, there remains a risk of the virus raising its ugly face again,” said Dr Pandey.
A version of this article appears in print on October 25, 2017 of The Himalayan Times.