EPI Campaigns To Be Conducted In North, South Waziristain After Diptheria Outbreak

EPI campaigns to be conducted in North, South Waziristain after Diptheria outbreak

PESHAWAR, (UrduPoint / Pakistan Point News - 26th August, 2016) : Director Health Services (DHS) FATA Dr. Jawad Habib Khan, in a meeting held at EOC FATA on Friday directed to conduct routine EPI campaign in North Waziristan and South Waziristan Agency in response to the findings of Diptheria outbreak.

According to a press release issued here, Dr. Jawad said renewed campaigns should ensure vaccination of multi antigens (including BCG, Penta, PCV-10, IPV and measles or vaccines of routine immunization schedule) to preempt outbreaks of other diseases as well.

It was decided in the meeting that in the first phase multi antigen vaccination campaign will be carried out in three rounds of 12 days and will be extended to all parts of North and South Waziristan Agencies.

In the second phase, multi antigen vaccination campaign will be expanded to surrounding areas including FR Tank, FR DIKhan, FR Lakki and FR Bannu. Surveillance spots and mechanism will also be established.

Earlier, Health and Nutrition Specialist UNICEF, Immunization Officer, Provincial Cluster Lead WHO and EPI Officer WHO pledged full support and emphasized the need for health monitoring and surveillance mechanism for effective routine immunization.

An emergency meeting was called on and decisions were taken in the light of spread of Diptheria outbreak in North Waziristan Agency to South Waziristan Agency on August 21st, 2016 and yesterday (on August 25th, 2016) to FR Bannu.

Diptheria cases were reported in Miran Shah Tehsil of North Waziristan Agency in response to which case response was launched in affected areas on August 10, 2016. Out of the 15 suspected patients, 6 children died of Diptheria in North Waziristan and 9 other probable cases were under treatment in various agency and district hospitals of FATA and Khyber Pakhtunkhwa.

Whereas, in South Waziristan Agency there were 3 deaths and 5 probable cases who were referred to tertiary care hospital at Peshawar. With the support of Pakistan Army in the case response launched at North and South Waziristan Agencies 1742 and 415 children had been vaccinated with Pentavalent respectively.

All the three hospitals (Agency Head Quarter North Waziristan Agency, Agency Head Quarter South Waziristan Agency and District Hospital Bannu) have been alerted, whereas, isolation ward has been established in Women & Children Hospital in Bannu as well as in Agency Head Quarter North Waziristan Agency.

N-Stop Officers (trained in Field Epidemiology) have been appointed as focal persons in affected area of each North & South Waziristan Agencies. The meeting was also attended by relevant representatives of WHO, UNICEF, BMGF and FATA Health Officials.