Pakistani Government: Vaccinate or Be Jailed

As part of a government campaign in Pakistan, police are arresting parents who refuse to allow medical officials to vaccinate their children for Polio. Around 500 arrests were made in early March regarding the issue. Polio is a viral disease that mostly affects children. If it is contracted and goes untreated Polio can lead to paralysis and death. Polio is easily cured with a simple vaccination. Despite this well-known fact, many of the Pakistani citizens are afraid to get vaccinated. They became distrustful of the medical officials in the area when they learned the CIA collected samples of DNA from one of the vaccination camps. They used the DNA collected from the camp to track the relatives of Osama Bin Laden. When citizens found this out they started to react violently toward medical officials. “According to The National Emergency Operations Center, 70 medical workers have been killed since 2012” (Saifi and Botelho).  

Authorities have recognized the public’s response to the officials. In order to eradicate the Polio disease from the country, they have decided to force the citizens to vaccinate their children. Anyone arrested for this offense can only be released on bail if they sign a affidavit stating they will take their children to be vaccinated. (Saifi and Botelho). It is too early to determine the success of this initiative but everyone can see handling the issue is one of the government’s main priorities. Polio has been eradicated in most areas of the world. This is one of the last places it survives. Hopefully we will be able to make the world Polio free.