Contributions of the polio network to the COVID-19 response: turning the challenge into an opportunity for polio transition


The COVID-19 pandemic highlights the urgent need for robust and systematic implementation of plans for the integration of assets and functions so far supported by GPEI into national health systems. As the world reaches closer to polio eradication, resources for the polio programme will decline, putting this valuable network at risk. National governments and development partners have a duty to ensure that sufficient resources are made available to recover from the economic, social and health consequences of COVID-19 and to build robust public health emergency preparedness and response systems to improve countries’ resilience. The critical role that polio assets have played in tackling multiple health emergencies and in supporting immunization activities, coupled with their contributions in responding to the COVID-19 pandemic and the potential role they can play in the recovery phase, demonstrate the need to sustain these capabilities to advance national and global health security