D24 have contacted Dr. Imad Mustphate, one of the most notable founders of anti-polio vaccine campaigns in Deir Ezzor in recent years, and he informed the network of new circumstances that have brought back polio to the province once again.
He said in the interview, ‘ I have communicated with some doctors who are still operating in the province and I was informed that more than 30 children were tested positive in the countryside. The affected areas are as following:
- The city of Sabikhan in the eastern countryside where 15 cases were documented.
- The Kashma town near Al-Bukamal city
- Al-Bassira city
- Al-Surr city in the northern countryside
- Al-Kassrah town in the western countryside.
The first case of polio in Syria was documented in the city of Sabikhan. However, the vaccine campaigns did not deal with it the way it should be since it is a Daesh-held city where humanitarian organizations and those affiliated with the International Health did not manage to reach that city and carry out the vaccine campaigns.
Concerning the previous campaigns carried out in Deir Ezzor, their duties were, somehow, incomplete, in addition to the exploitation of the funds to those campaigns by Daesh. The expenses of one campaigns revolved around 100-150 thousand dollars and were the vaccines were conducted under a direct control and supervision of Daesh and its loyalists, which prevented the stuff of those organization to vaccine all children living in the group held areas, proving that polio in Deir Ezzor has not been obliterated.
Some stuff of the International Health Organization were not committed to their work because of overlooking many children suffering from polio in many different homes in the province.
The danger of polio:
In medical science, for every case of polio, there are 200 vulnerable cases to the same disease, which sparks concerns about the widespread of polio on a large-scale in the province. The disease is spread through water and air, in addition to other means.
Imad Mustapha has made an appeal to the International Health Organization to do the best they can to obliterate widespread polio disease in Deir Ezzor, and to find a way to conduct vaccine campaigns in areas controlled by Deash, adding that they should open a communication network with Daesh, if it is necessary since what counts here is to save the children of Deir Ezzor from this catastrophe that has befallen upon them.
He summed up the interview by stating that ‘All polio cases have been detected in clinics and not laboratories, and polio is not limited to children in Deir Ezzor, but also Al-Raqqa province. Because it is difficult to communicate with medical stuff in Al-Raqqa, it was impossible to obtain all details about the disease.”