Polio Emergency: More on the News
- The U.S. finds a place on a list of 30 countries, where either imported wild or vaccine-derived poliovirus or circulating vaccine-derived poliovirus (cVDPV) has been identified.
- Afghanistan and Pakistan are the two countries in the world where polio remains endemic.
Polio Emergency: Circulating Vaccine-derived Poliovirus (cVDPV):
- If an Inactivated poliovirus vaccine (IPV) vaccinated person is infected with wild poliovirus, the virus can still multiply inside intestines and be found in faeces.
- In some cases, this excreted vaccine virus can continue to circulate for a longer time period, with chances of undergoing genetic changes.
- This virus is known as cVDPV.
Polio Emergency: About Polio Virus
|Poliomyelitis is a highly infectious viral disease that can cause disability and can prove fatal in some cases.|
|Fever, fatigue, headache, vomiting, stiffness of the neck and pain in the limbs are initial symptoms.|
|Strains of Wild Polio Virus (WPV):
|The virus spreads mainly through the faecal-oral route. It can spread between population through contaminated water or food.|
|Majority of polio cases are recorded in children below five years of age, but all unvaccinated people can be infected.|
|Cure:||Polio disease has no cure. It can only be prevented by vaccination.|
|Oral Poliovirus Vaccine (OPV):
Inactivated poliovirus vaccine (IPV)
Polio Emergency: Polio Immunization in India
- The Government of India launched the Pulse Polio immunization programme in 1995, aiming to provide polio drops to all children in the 0-5 years age group.
- WHO removed India from its list of endemic countries with active poliovirus transmission in 2012. India was certified polio-free in March 2014.
- Risks for India:
- India is in the close proximity of polio-endemic countries of Pakistan and Afghanistan. Despite the gaps in vaccination during Covid-19, there is no evidence of virus circulating in the community.
- The last case of polio in the country was reported from West Bengal’s Howrah district in January 2011.
- Surveillance: India carries out acute flaccid paralysis (AFP) surveillance of the population to meet global standards.
- It also undertakes Environmental Surveillance (ES), which involves regular collection of sewage water, to check for poliovirus in faecal matter.