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POLIO NEWS - July 2022

 

The latest polio eradication activities around the world this month in Polio News. ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌
 
 

 

POLIO NEWS                  July 2022

Dear polio eradication supporter,

On 21 July, a case of variant poliovirus type 2 (VDPV2) was confirmed, in Rockland County, New York. As the first case of polio identified in the United States in nearly a decade, this demonstrates that until polio is fully eradicated everywhere, all countries remain at risk. Just this past month, WHO and UNICEF released official data confirming the largest sustained decline in childhood vaccinations in approximately 30 years. Increased rates of vaccination will be essential in delivering a polio-free world, and it is more apparent than ever that childhood routine immunization is crucial to avoid resurgence. The detection of polio in New York and drop in childhood vaccination rates represents the urgent need to protect children and communities from all preventable diseases like polio and build a healthier world.

 

Parameters for polio eradication revisited

© WHO

This month, the regional and global groups responsible for verifying the achievement of a wild polio-free region met to review the criteria set for certification. Historically, regions had to provide evidence of three years without detection of wild poliovirus from any source, but thanks to programme advancements in genomic analysis and environmental surveillance, this time frame is being reevaluated. See why certification commissions are recommending the adoption of a ‘flexible’ approach, that takes into account the different geo-political realities and health systems, to independently determine if wild poliovirus has been eradicated.

 
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A recommitment to polio eradication

In an op-ed published this month, the former and current WHO Regional Directors for Europe, Dr Marc Danzon and Dr Hans Kluge, remind us that until we stop all forms of polio, every country remains at risk. As the European Region reaches 20 years since being certified as free of polio, the recent detection of variant poliovirus in London’s sewage samples is a clear example that this progress is fragile. To keep Europe free of polio and end the disease everywhere, the Regional Directors call for fully funding the GPEI’s strategy at the programmeeee’s pledging moment during the World Health Summit in October.

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Polio surveillance has never been more important

©WHO Yemen / Omar Nasr

In Yemen, Dr Mutahar Ahmed leads the country’s acute flaccid paralysis (AFP) surveillance efforts, which are vital to tracking poliovirus transmission. Despite long-running conflict, a critical humanitarian situation and a cVDPV2 outbreak, wide-reaching AFP surveillance in Yemen tells a promising story where health workers are able to detect polio spread and inform response tactics. Along with strong surveillance systems, vaccination campaigns, like continued nationwide campaigns in Afghanistan, are crucial in order to stop all forms of polio everywhere.

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Dr Hamid Jafari at Rotary International Convention

©Rotary International

In June, Rotarians from around the world gathered in Houston to share ideas, reflect on collaborative progress and hear from motivating speakers making an impact on the world. Providing an update on polio eradication progress in Pakistan and Afghanistan, Dr Hamid Jafari (Polio Eradication Director, WHO EMRO) spoke with some of the 1.2 million Rotarians committed to building a world without this debilitating disease. In case you missed it, watch Dr Jafari’s entire keynote today.

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POLIO GENDER CHAMPION

UK Minister for Asia and the Middle East Ms Amanda Milling became the GPEI’s latest Gender Champion, committing to raise awareness on the importance of gender barriers and women’s leadership in polio eradication efforts. See tweets here.

 
 

POLIO IN NUMBERS

Wild Poliovirus in 2022 (2021)*

Global Total:      18 (2)

Circulating Vaccine Derived Poliovirus in 2022 (2021)*

Global Total:   187 (179)

*Data as of 26 July 2022. Numbers in brackets represent data at this time in 2021.

Breakdown by country Polio this week

 
 

POLIO IN THE NEWS

 

STAT: What to know about polio, a disease once again vying for attention (Helen Branswell, 26 July 2022)

New York Times: First polio case in nearly a decade is reported in New York State (Hurubie Meko, 21 July 2022)

Global Citizen: Vaccine-derived polio: everything you need to know (Jacky Habib, 11 July 2022)

Nature: What polio's UK presence means for global health (Giorgia Guglielmi, 4 July, 2022)

 

DONOR UPDATES

UNICEF thanks Rotary International for its generous contribution of US$ 37 844 646, which will support social mobilization and communication activities in the endemic countries, global outbreak response activities and the replenishment of the global emergency vaccine stockpile.

UNICEF  and WHO are very grateful to US CDC for their generous contributions of US$ 23 million and  US$ 26.1 million which will support UNICEF’s and WHO’s global polio eradication activities.

WHO thanks to USAID for their July contribution of US$ 3 million.

WHO thanks the Trustees of the Rotary Foundation approved PolioPlus grants totaling almost US$ 22.5 million at their June 2022 meeting, in support of technical assistance to the African Region, Pakistan operations, global outbreak response, and research projects in the UK and Nigeria.

WHO is grateful to the National Philanthropic Trust (NPT) for the US$ 10.86 million in support of technical assistance and outbreak response activities.

WHO acknowledges gratefully the Bill & Melinda Gates Foundation, which provided US$ 45 million to support polio outbreak response campaigns and surge capacity.

 

PHOTO OF THE MONTH

Dr Mutahar Ahmed, Yemen’s national surveillance coordinator, reviews locations of AFP cases detected in the country. © WHO Yemen/Omar Nasr

Dr Mutahar Ahmed, Yemen’s national surveillance coordinator, reviews locations of AFP cases detected in the country. © WHO Yemen/Omar Nasr

 
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