ISLAMABAD: The Capital Development Authority’s (CDA) Directorate of Health Services has achieved 100 per cent coverage of children under the age of five year during the anti-polio campaign held from December 27 to 30 last year, as shown by independent evaluation of the campaign by the World Health Organisation (WHO), said a press release on Friday.
The activity is part of the sub-national immunisation day (SNID) campaign announced by the Prime Minister’s Cell for polio eradication, headed by Ayesha Raza Farooq, the prime minister’s focal person for polio eradication.
The objective of SNID is to administer anti-polio drops to the children under the age of five years residing in high-risk areas, such as slums, villages, unplanned settlements, etc.
Since polio virus is transmitted in unhygienic and poor sanitary conditions, it is important to cover children in these areas.
For December, the CDA chalked out a special plan to cover children in rural slums and high-risk areas in the north west of Islamabad. The entire area was divided into seven zones, with teams in each zone targeting 7,000 to 10,000 children. A total number of 58,558 children were vaccinated during the campaign, the statement read.
According to the information released, each zone was led by a zonal supervisor, while 35 sector supervisors were deputed to organise and monitor the field activity.
As many as 151 mobile teams consisting of 302 workers went from door to door to administer anti-polio drops to children.
In addition to that, 40 teams were deputed at fixed points at various centres in order to cater to those who were missed when the mobile teams visited their houses.
Twenty transit teams were established at various locations at different entry and exit points where passengers from surrounding cities and districts entered Islamabad.
Major areas – in addition to other smaller villages around Islamabad – targeted included Golra Sharif, Tarnol, Sangjani, Noon, Jhangi Syedan, Budhana Kalan, Dhoke Pracha, Pind Pracha, Drek Mori, I11, Bokra and Mera Badia.
The hallmark of the effort was that the third-party independent evaluation by the WHO monitors had announced that no child was missed in these poor high-risk areas, which were planned to be included in the SNID.
Monitoring tool Lots Quality Assurance (LQS) is being used to make an assessment of the quality of the campaigns. The LQS is considered to be one of the strictest monitoring tools.
The CDA Directorate of Health Services has reportedly adopted a new strategy to ensure 100 per cent coverage of children through revisiting unavailable children, locked houses and refusals. This new strategy ensures that a child once missed for any of the above-mentioned reason is revisited until the drops are administered.
The strategy seems to be successfully working as shown by independent WHO monitoring results of the campaign.
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