Mobile teams tour remote areas to cover high-risk nomadic groups, migrants and construction workers
Accompanied by their parents, children took polio drops on Sunday as the Pulse Polio programme to cover more than 3.68 lakh children in the 0-5 age group in Prakasam district got under way.
Prakasam district Collector Kantilal Dande formally inaugurated the massive exercise by administering polio drops to a few children at the Ghosh hospital here.
Parents brought their children to the 2,491 pulse polio designated centres set up across the district to protect their dear ones from the dreaded virus.
Coinciding with the Mahashivaratri, 87 transit booths were were formed at Dornala, Manikeswaram and Mogilacheruvu among other places to cover pilgrims visiting Srisailam in neighbouring Kurnool district and other Shiva temples in the district.
The mobile teams also toured the remote areas of the district to cover high-risk nomadic groups, migrants and construction workers.
“Over 80 per cent of children have been covered till 4 p.m,” District Immunisation Officer (DIO) M. Kalyani said.
The centres in rural areas would remain open even beyond 6.00 pm to immunise the children of farmers and farm workers busy with harvest.
Officials of the Health department and Integrated Tribal Development Agency (ITDA) officials, spread out to interior villages in the Nallamalla forests to ensure that not a single child was missed out.
The DIO oversaw the implementation of the programme in different parts of the district including Tripuranthakam, Pullalacheruvu and Yerragondapalem mandals inhabited by Chenchus.
Those left out during the day would be covered during the door-to-door campaign on Monday and Tuesday, the DIO added.
The district has been polio free since 2003 when one case was reported within the Talluru Public Health Centre limits.
More than 2 lakh children in the age group of 0-5 years were administered polio drops in the district. According to sources, a total of 13,132 employees and 939 vehicles besides scores of volunteers were involved in the drive. Boats were also pressed into service to carry out the task at several villages situated in the Godavari river belt under the limits of Koida, Parnashala, Regalla, Jeediguppa and a few other Primary Health Centres. In all 3,232 polio booths were set up across the district. The services of mobile teams were availed to administer polio drops in the tribal habitations situated in the forest areas in Bhadrachalam and Palvancha divisions.
Polio drops were administered to the children of migrant tribals from Orissa and Chhattisgarh at brick kilns at Gandhampalli village in Bayyaram mandal, sources said.
Earlier, Minister for Horticulture R Venkat Reddy launched the polio immunisation drive at the government primary school at Burhanpuram in Khammam. Joint Collector M M Naik and others were present.
ITDA, Bhadrachalam, Project Officer Praveen Kumar administered polio drops to the tribal children at Pocharam village in V R Puram mandal.
From the remote tribal hamlets in Macherla mandal to villages located in small islands in Tenali revenue segment, the massive Pulse Polio immunisation drive, part of universal immunisation programme, saw the involvement of the entire district administration.
District Medical and Health Officer, M. Gopi Nayak said that they had covered 80 per cent of the target of administering the OPV to 4,22,962 children in the district. The drive was held in 2,563 booths across the district. Special counters were set up on the premises of Railway Station and Bus Station Complex. Minister for Agriculture Kanna Lakshminarayana inaugurated the programme on the premises of DMHO's office premises, Rural Development Minister D.M Vara Prasada Rao administered polio drops at NTR Stadium and District Collector V.N Vishnu opened the programme at Urban Health Centre at Srinivasa Rao thota. Superintendent of Police, Guntur Urban, S. Syamsundar along with his family took part in the polio drive held at Police Clinic.
The DMHO said that the immunisation drive saw the involvement of 10,000 personnel, consisting of Anganwadi workers, ASHA volunteers, nursing staff etc.
A team of Rotary Club of Macherla administered polio drops to the children living in fishing hamlets, located 100 nautical miles away from Macherla. The team led by physician K. Rama Kotaiah used a motor boat, the only means of transport, to cross reservoir bordering five districts namely Guntur, Nalgonda, Mahaboobnagar, Prakasam and Kurnool.
As many as 87 transit booths set up at Dornala, Manikeswaram and Mogilacheruvu Special counters set up at railway station and bus station complex in Guntur
As many as 87 transit booths set up at Dornala, Manikeswaram and Mogilacheruvu
Special counters set up at railway station and bus station complex in Guntur