The Punjab government has left 294,000 children unvaccinated during the last month’s anti-polio drive. Lahore had the highest percentage of missed children at 3.3%. An assessment report revealed that 3.2 million children were missed during the National Immunisation Drive in October. Teams revisited poorly covered areas and vaccinated 1.7 million ‘missed children’ which constituted 54% of the total missed population. Catch-up campaigns were also launched to cover for polio vaccine 1.2 million more ‘missed kids’ out of the 1.7 million leftover children. The report further exposed the provincial government saying that there were a total of 269 localities which were marked by the experts as ‘poorly covered areas’. After Lahore, Dera Ghazi Khan, Rawalpindi and Faisalabad marked most of the poorly covered areas for vaccination to the children, according to the report. Similarly, the report marked total 83 missed areas in Punjab where no polio team reached to vaccinate the children in October. An official said the Independent Monitoring Board (IMB) had warned the Punjab government last year that the missed children were a big threat to the efforts for anti-polio activities in the province particularly and Pakistan in general. He said Lahore was continuously reporting environmental sample positive.

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By hassani

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