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Polio Highlight

Polio in the Syrian Arab Republic - update

11 November 2013 - Thirteen cases of wild poliovirus type 1 (WPV1) have been confirmed in the Syrian Arab Republic. Genetic sequencing indicates that the isolated viruses are most closely linked to virus detected in environmental samples in Egypt in December 2012 (which in turn had been linked to wild poliovirus circulating in Pakistan). Closely related wild poliovirus strains have also been detected in environmental samples in Israel, West Bank and Gaza Strip since February 2013. Wild poliovirus had not been detected in the Syrian Arab Republic since 1999.

A comprehensive outbreak response continues to be implemented across the region. On 24 October 2013, an already-planned large-scale supplementary immunization activity was launched in the Syrian Arab Republic to vaccinate 1.6 million children against polio, measles, mumps and rubella, in both government-controlled and contested areas. Implementation of a supplementary immunization campaign in Deir Al Zour province commenced promptly when the first ‘hot’ acute flaccid paralysis (AFP) cases were reported. Larger-scale outbreak response across the Syrian Arab Republic and neighbouring countries will continue for at least 6-8 months depending on the area and based on the evolving situation.

Given the current situation in the Syrian Arab Republic, frequent population movements across the region and the immunization level in key areas, the risk of further international spread of wild poliovirus type 1 across the region is considered to be high. A surveillance alert has been issued for the region to actively search for additional potential cases.

WHO’s International Travel and Health recommends that all travellers to and from polio-infected areas be fully vaccinated against polio

Source: WHO

View the original article here

PAHO is working on its operational plan to achieve the polio-related outputs defined in the Plan and Budget 2014-2015

PAHO is working on its operational plan to achieve the polio-related outputs defined in the Plan and Budget 2014-2015 approved by the Directing Council in 2013.

These outputs are:

OPT 1.5.4 Maintenance of the regional surveillance systems to monitor acute flaccid paralysis.

OPT 1.5.5 Countries trained on the use of new algorithms aimed at the isolation and intratypic differentiation of poliovirus and improved performance indicators.

OPT 1.5.6 Established processes for risk management of long term poliovirus, including the containment of all poliovirus stocks and the certification of polio eradication in the region.

View the Official Document 346 — Program and Budget of the Pan American Health Organization 2014-2015, pp 31here

WHO/ Polio in the Syrian Arab Republic

29 October 2013 - Following reports of a cluster of 22 acute flaccid paralysis (AFP) cases on 17 October 2013 in the Syrian Arab Republic, wild poliovirus type 1 (WPV1) has been isolated from ten of the cases under investigation. Final genetic sequencing results are pending to determine the origin of the isolated viruses. Wild poliovirus had not been detected in the Syrian Arab Republic since 1999.

Last Updated on Friday, 01 November 2013 15:31
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Oversight Board reaffirms unflagging commitment

Statement by heads of agencies of the Global Polio Eradication Initiative

On 26 September, the Polio Oversight Board (POB) met with donors and other key stakeholders to review progress against the GPEI’s Polio Eradication and Endgame Strategic Plan 2013-2018, launched earlier this year.

To read more about the POB and the results of the recent meeting please go to http://www.polioeradication.org/tabid/488/iid/323/Default.aspx

Last Updated on Friday, 11 October 2013 13:54

Polio outbreak response continues in the Horn of Africa

In the Horn of Africa, intensive outbreak response is continuing. The impact of the response is beginning to be seen, as the number of newly-reported cases from Banadir, Somalia (the epicentre of the outbreak) has declined. At the same time, operations are improving as more children are being reached, including in some inaccessible areas of south-central Somalia. The risk this outbreak poses for the entire region was again underscored this week; however, as two further cases from Ethiopia have been confirmed.

Last Updated on Thursday, 26 September 2013 15:13
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