Assessment of the NSTOP (FELTP) Program Progress towards Polio Eradication in Pakistan; 2011-2016

  • Public health surveillance
  • Vaccine preventable diseases
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The government of Pakistan recognized the risk of becoming the last reservoir of poliovirus in the world and developed a National Emergency Action Plan (NEAP) for polio eradication in 2011. To complement the efforts of the government of Pakistan under NEAP, the National Stop Transmission of Polio (NSTOP) program was launched in March 2011. The mission of the program is to assist with polio eradication in high risk districts of Pakistan. This assessment of the NSTOP program was conducted to work out its further extension.

We conducted a retrospective desk review of the NSTOP monthly reports and LQAS data of NSTOP districts to assess the overtime improvement in campaign quality since its launch. Quality campaigns ensure the enhanced immunity status among children. Over time improvement in the immunity status among non-polio AFP cases in NSTOP districts was also assessed during 2011 to 2016.

In 2011, 16 officers were recruited and by 2016, 56 officers have been assigned to 53 high risk districts. District polio eradication committee meetings honourship by Deputy Commissioners enhanced from 37% (2011) to 87% (2016). NSTOP officers have reviewed 28, 165 micro plans, identified 538 areas that were missed in micro plans, covered 28, 847 missed children and converged 28, 233 refusals by convincing parents. They monitored 18, 254 polio teams and 10, 363 supervisors during campaigns. Resultantly LQAS pass percentage has improved from 33% (2011) to 64% (2015) and immunity status of children have enhanced over time (76.78% in 2011 to 90% in 2016) in NSTOP assigned districts.

NSTOP program has emerged as leading polio eradication initiative partner in Pakistan. On the basis of the progress NSTOP made role towards polio eradication efforts, its extension to remaining high risk districts has been planned.

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