"WHO's Emergency Committee has confirmed three countries - Pakistan, Afghanistan and Nigeria - where the crippling virus is still endemic."
Islamabad, May 8 - Pakistan's tribal province Khyber Pakhtunkhwa faces an acute shortage of oral polio vaccine - and has sought a two-week grace period from the WHO to put its mechanisms in place before the restrictions laid down by the global health agency are enforced on the country's travellers.

The province still requires 50,000 OPV doses to cater to travellers through Peshawar's Bacha Khan International Airport, Dawn online reported.

The World Health Organisation Monday imposed strict travel restrictions on Pakistan due to the increasing number of polio cases in the country and made it mandatory for Pakistanis to travel abroad with a polio vaccination certificate.

Khyber Pakhtunkhwa's health minister has said that travel restrictions were initially for three to six months and that the polio vaccine certificate would be valid for one year.

The provincial health department has already set up anti-polio counters at the airport where children under five are being provided OPV before travelling.

WHO's Emergency Committee has confirmed three countries - Pakistan, Afghanistan and Nigeria - where the crippling virus is still endemic.

Sixty percent of new cases were the result of the international spread of the wild polio virus, and there was increasing evidence that adult travellers contributed to this.


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