Japan provides $3.87m new grants for polio eradication efforts in Pakistan

ISLAMABAD: The Government of Japan extended its support to the
Pakistan Polio Eradication Programme by providing more than US$ 3.87 million
as a grant.

The grant will be used for the procurement of essential oral polio vaccine,
which will reach more than 18.61 million under five years old children in
Pakistan living in endemic and outbreak districts.

The notes of the grant were signed and exchanged between the Government of
Japan and the United Nations Children’s Fund (UNICEF) and between Japan
International Cooperation Agency (JICA) and UNICEF. Minister Abdul Qadir
Patel, the Ministry of National Health Services, Regulation and Coordination
and other dignitaries were present during the signing event.

“Pakistan has come a long way in the last 30 years. From thousands of
children paralyzed by poliovirus in the 1980s and 1990s, we have managed to
reduce the number of cases and affected communities drastically,” said
Health Minister Abdul Qadir Patel.

Referring to the commitment of the government to polio eradication, the
Minister said, “The Programme has successfully restricted virus circulation
to endemic districts in Khyber Pakhtunkhwa; we are committed and optimistic
about eradicating polio by 2023.” The Minister extended his sincere
appreciation for the support of the Government of Japan and partners for
their unwavering commitment to Polio eradication.

The Government of Japan has been supporting the Polio Eradication Programme
in Pakistan since 1996. The long-standing partnerships have helped to reach
millions of children with life-saving vaccines over the years.

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