KARACHI: A concerning development unfolds as a child in Karachi’s Gadap Town becomes the latest victim of the poliovirus, bringing the total number of polio cases in Pakistan this year to five.
A 31-month-old boy in UC-4 Gujro, Gadap Town, District East Karachi, tested positive for Wild Poliovirus 1, marking the second case in Karachi this year, as reported by an official from the Emergency Operation Centre (EOC) Sindh.
This recent case originates from the same area in Gadap Town where the previous polio case in Karachi was reported just last month.
According to the EOC Sindh official, the child had received three doses of Oral Polio Vaccine (OPV) through routine immunization, along with two shots of intravenous polio vaccine (IPV) and more than seven doses of OPV on separate occasions, as revealed by the initial investigation.
While genetic sequencing of the isolated virus is underway, the official highlighted the absence of any travel history for the child. An intensive investigation has been launched to comprehend the circumstances leading to the resurgence of the poliovirus in Karachi.
Recent reports indicate the detection of Type-1 Wild Poliovirus (WPV1) in nine environmental samples collected in October. Among these samples, four were from Karachi, two from Chaman, and one each from Peshawar, Kohat, and Nowshera.
With the addition of this new case, the total number of polio cases in Pakistan for 2023 has reached five, while the positive environmental (sewage) samples have totaled 64, according to officials.