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Tuuli Hongisto
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Poliomyelitis (polio)


    66顺彩票appPoliomyelitis (polio) is a highly infectious viral disease, which mainly affects young children. The virus is transmitted by person-to-person spread mainly through the faecal-oral route or, less frequently, by a common vehicle (e.g. contaminated water or food) and multiplies in the intestine, from where it can invade the nervous system and can cause paralysis.

    Initial symptoms of polio include fever, fatigue, headache, vomiting, stiffness in the neck, and pain in the limbs. In a small proportion of cases, the disease causes paralysis, which is often permanent. There is no cure for polio, it can only be prevented by immunization.

    While there is no cure for polio, it can be prevented by vaccination.


    Wild poliovirus cases have decreased by over 99% since 1988, from an estimated 350 000 cases in more than 125 endemic countries then, to 33 reported cases in 2018.

    Of the 3 strains of wild poliovirus (type 1, type 2, and type 3), wild poliovirus type 2 was eradicated in 1999 and no case of wild poliovirus type 3 has been found since the last reported case in Nigeria in November 2012.

    66顺彩票appThe strategies for polio eradication work when they are fully implemented. This is clearly demonstrated by India’s success in stopping polio in January 2011, in arguably the most technically-challenging place, and polio-free certification of the entire South-East Asia Region of WHO occurred in March 2014.

    Failure to implement strategic approaches, however, leads to ongoing transmission of the virus. Endemic transmission of wild poliovirus is continuing to cause cases in border areas of Afghanistan and Pakistan. Failure to stop polio in these last remaining areas could result in as many as 200 000 new cases every year, within 10 years, all over the world. That is why it is critical to ensure polio is eradicated completely, once and for all.


    In 1988, the Forty-first World Health Assembly adopted a resolution for the worldwide eradication of polio. It marked the launch of the Global Polio Eradication Initiative (GPEI), spearheaded by national governments, WHO, Rotary International, the US Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC), UNICEF, and later joined by additional key partners including the Bill & Melinda Gates Foundation and Gavi, the Vaccine Alliance. This followed the certification of the eradication of smallpox in 1980, progress during the 1980s towards elimination of the poliovirus in the Americas, and Rotary International’s commitment to raise funds to protect all children from the disease.

    Overall, since the GPEI was launched, the number of cases has fallen by over 99%.

    66顺彩票appMore than 18 million people are able to walk today, who would otherwise have been paralysed. An estimated 1.5 million childhood deaths have been prevented, through the systematic administration of vitamin A during polio immunization activities.


    Global Polio Eradication Initiative

    Global Polio Eradication Initiative


    Global Polio Eradication Initiative: annual report 2017: securing a lasting world free of all polioviruses

    66顺彩票appSince the launch of the Global Polio Eradication Initiative (GPEI) in 1988, the incidence of polio has been reduced by more than 99%, from an estimated...

    Global Polio Eradication Initiative: annual report 2016: eradication within reach

    66顺彩票appIn 2016, fewer children were paralysed by polio than in any other year in history, and the world moved closer still to eradicating polio. Circulating in...


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