Is EU/EEA population protected from polio?
The WHO European Region has been declared polio-free since 2002. By 2010, inactivated polio vaccine (IPV) was the only polio vaccine in use in the EU/EEA for the primary vaccination of children. A systematic review of the literature on polio seroprevalence studies, complemented by the analysis of available vaccine coverage data, has been carried out with the aim of assessing the level of protection against polio in the European population. A total of 52 studies, with data from 14 out of the 31 EU/EEA countries, were included in the analysis. This systematic review shows that, overall, seroprevalence for PV1 and PV3 is high in most countries, although seroimmunity gaps have been detected in several birth cohorts. In particular, relatively low immunity status was found in some countries for individuals born in the 60\'s and 70\'s. Discrepancies between reported vaccination coverage and immunity levels have been also highlighted. Countries should make sure that their population is being vaccinated for polio to reduce the risk of local poliovirus transmission in case of importation. Moreover, assessing immunity status should be priority for those traveling to areas where wild polioviruses are still circulating.
Human Vaccines & Immunotherapeutics
- Service delivery