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October 15, 2019
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Two new polio cases reported bringing the total number to six in 2019

ISLAMABAD: Two new polio cases surfaced in Karachi and Khyber tribal district on Thursday.

The fresh cases of the crippling disease brought the total number of cases to six in the ongoing year.

While a 12-month-old toddler from Landi Kotal contracted the virus, the victim from Karachi is a three-year-old minor.

Focal Person on Polio Eradication Babar Atta said that the cases are symptoms of an underlying problem: heavy virus circulation in sewage and the environment. “On PowerPoint everything is a GREEN [but] on Ground a big Fat RED,” he tweeted.

A separate statement issued by the Sindh government gave details on the case from Karachi. “It is with great regret that we announce the first polio case of Sindh in 2019 as a 36-month-old female child has tested positive for the virus in UC 9 Lyari Town,’ the communiqué read.

The statement quoted provincial DG Health Masood Solangi claiming that the child had received oral polio vaccine multiple times; however, she had a history of illness, suffered from malnourishment and was low on immunity; hence developed weakness in her limbs.

“However the child will not suffer from paralysis as she was vaccinated with OPV on multiple occasions and has fully recovered,” he was quoted as saying.

Coordinator Emergency Operation Center of the Polio Eradication Initiative Umer Farooq Bullo said “the Sindh government will respond strongly and a campaign is planned in the city from March 25”.

A total 12 poliovirus cases were reported from the country in 2018.