Oral Polio virus Vaccine (OPV) is administered as drops by mouth at birth to all children, and then at 6 weeks, 10 weeks and 14 weeks of age. While almost all the rest of the world has eradicated polio, it is still unfortunately prevalent in Pakistan. It is therefore critical that all children in Pakistan be timely vaccinated with this vaccine. The government is conducting regular supplemental immunization campaigns where polio vaccine is given to all children less than five years of age. Given that polio is still common in Pakistan, it is necessary for every child to be vaccinated in every campaign.
Inject able Polio Virus Vaccine (IPV), which is administered through injection is also available in Pakistan. It is usually given as part of the combination vaccines which are available in private market. While IPV is effective in preventing polio, OPV should always be given in addition to IPV. This is necessary as OPV prevents transmission of polio virus to other children while IPV only protects the child who received it.