The Safeguarding Health in Conflict Coalition (SHCC) identified 16 incidents of violence against or obstruction of health care in Pakistan in 2022, an increase from seven in 2021. Nearly 90% of these incidents involved threats and violence against polio vaccination workers, undermining health care providers’ ability to meet vaccination targets. This factsheet is based on the dataset 2022 SHCC Health Care Pakistan Data, which is available for download on the Humanitarian Data Exchange (HDX).
The number of recorded incidents is likely lower than the actual number that occurred. There are indications that health workers participating in vaccination campaigns often experience violence and threats every day while carrying out their work, although these incidents are usually not reported.
Increased violence and insecurity along the Afghan-Pakistan border regions and the resurgence of Tehrik-i-Taliban Pakistan (TTP) attacks impacted polio vaccination campaigns in 2022. In April, after a 15-month period of no reported polio outbreaks, a new case was detected in the violence-hit North Waziristan district on the Afghan border, a high-priority vaccination campaign area. By the end of 2022, the highly infectious wild poliovirus had paralyzed 20 children, leading to an increase in vaccination drives and a subsequent uptick in violence against these programs.
Health services were impacted by catastrophic floods and landslides during the June-October monsoon period. These natural disasters damaged health facilities, displaced staff, and disrupted a nationwide polio vaccination campaign organized for August.