Raj Gupta, barely 14 months old is receiving treatment for polio at the Indira Gandhi Memorial hospital, Bhiwandi. He is suffering from an attack of polio , the wild polio strain (P3).
The state of Bhiwandi is home to large numbers of migrant populations. This is the second case of polio reported from Mumbai during this year.
In the case of Raj, though the vaccine was administered in October 2007 in Bhiwandi, the boy did not get the regular immunization shot of the polio vaccine in Uttar Pradesh. Raj's mother had disallowed the authorities to administer the vaccine to her child. "The only thing was that I didn't give him the rural injections. But I did give all the polio doses after coming to Mumbai. I hope he gets well, he is my only child," she said.
Nearly 1500 families in Bhiwandi have not responded positively to the efforts of health workers to administer the oral polio vaccine.
Dr B D Sorte, chief medical officer, Bhiwandi, said, "There have been several measures we have adopted to convert the mindset. Yet, the biggest problem we have is of repeated refusals. Some people refuse to let their children be given the vaccine despite the sermons and the educational efforts we have made. That is our biggest challenge. Our records show that there are 1,500 such families. They also refuse when our workers go to their house to administer the vaccine."
Doctors confirmed that the treatment is on for the boy and the prognosis will be clear in 60 days.