‘It’s scary work, but I’m determined. We will make Pakistan polio-free’

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As the virus returns, one frontline worker tells of her daily trials and triumphs in the fight to eradicate it for ever

Saima Hanif, 32, is one of Pakistan’s frontline health workers, part of a network of volunteers and low-paid women who are key in the country’s fight against polio. After 15 months of no reported cases, last week it was revealed that a 15-month-old boy had been paralysed by the polio virus in North Waziristan, bordering Afghanistan, where Hanif works. Here, she tells her story …

I was very happy that Pakistan reported no polio cases for more than a year, and I was hoping it would be among the countries that have eradicated polio completely. In Bangash colony, Rawalpindi, where I work, no virus was detected where it is measured – in sewage water for a year.

Continue reading…Global development | The Guardian

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