Polio cases cripple Maharashtra efforts
Mumbai, September 27
However, what has alarmed the state administration is the incidence of polio. Health officials on a polio-eradication drive have identified a nine-year-old girl with the polio virus.
The girl, Nazali Sheikh, is a resident of Govandi and has been found afflicted with the P1 strain of the virus which is most resistant to drugs, health officials confirmed here today.
The Chief Minister, Mr Vilasrao Deshmukh, and the Health Minister, Dr Vimal Mundada, are meeting health officials to intensify polio-eradication efforts, sources said.
The tests were conducted by the Enterovirus Research Centre laboratory in Ahmedabad. According to the sources, the girl had visited her hometown in Uttar Pradesh between April and June this year and it is suspected that she may have contracted the virus there.
The other case was reported earlier this year from Majalgaon in Beed district where Sakina Pathan, a two-year-old, was diagnosed with the disease.
Now, all municipal hospitals across the state have been asked to carry out surveys for polio.
Maharashtra has now placed an urgent request with the Centre for an additional 1.20 crore polio vaccine vials.
The cases were detected just when the World Health Organisation was about to declare Maharashtra a polio-free state.
Now, migrants from Uttar Pradesh and Bihar would be targeted for immunisation, the officials said.