Officials of the Bruhat Bangalore Mahanagara Palike (BBMP) are gearing up to achieve 100 per cent Pulse polio coverage by reaching out to around 6.61 lakh children in the city, during the two rounds that will take place on January 20 and February 24. Officials have appealed to parents to bring their children, aged below five years, on both the days for administering polio drops.
The BBMP officials will cover 135 of the 198 wards, and the remaining will be covered by the Urban District Health Officials. There will be as many as 1,807 booths set up by the civic body in all hospitals, markets, railway stations, bus-stops and other public places where the drops will be administered.
Speaking at a press conference on Thursday, BBMP Commissioner Siddaiah said the civic body aims to administer polio drops to around 6.61 lakh children . Last year, the palike achieved 99.92 per cent coverage with 6.48 lakh children being covered. Mr. Siddaiah also added that around Rs. 65 lakh has been allotted for the pulse polio programme in the city. “The Central government has given us Rs. 58 lakh for the programme, the remaining Rs. 7 lakh deficit funds would be borne by the BBMP,” he added. “All the concerned departments have been roped in to administer polio drops so that the disease is prevented.” He also said the last case of polio in the State was reported in 2007.
Booths to stock up
Devaki Umesh, Chief Health Officer, BBMP, said the civic body would ensure there is a 10 per cent additional reserve of polio drops at each booth. “We will ensure that no booth has a shortage,” the officer said.
She also added that the civic body would ensure that health workers and volunteers follow up to cover the children who missed to make it to the booth by undertaking house-to-house visits in the next three days. Dr. Umesh said the Auxiliary Nurse Midwives would administer polio drops at night to reach out to the homeless.
When a reporter asked Mr. Siddaiah and the Ms. Umesh why there was a shortage of anti–rabies vaccine in BBMP hospitals, Mr. Siddaiah directed the health officials to procure the rabies vaccine and ensure there was adequate stock in all BBMP hospitals within 24 hours.