Publications & Reports

So close: remaining challenges to eradicating polio.

Toole MJ
Burnet Institute, 85 Commercial Rd, Melbourne, 3004, Australia. toole@burnet.edu.au.

Abstract

The Global Polio Eradication Initiative, launched in 1988, is close to achieving its goal. In 2015, reported cases of wild poliovirus were limited to just two countries - Afghanistan and Pakistan. Africa has been polio-free for more than 18 months. Remaining barriers to global eradication include insecurity in areas such as Northwest Pakistan and Eastern and Southern Afghanistan, where polio cases continue to be reported. Hostility to vaccination is either based on extreme ideologies, such as in Pakistan, vaccination fatigue by parents whose children have received more than 15 doses, and misunderstandings about the vaccine’s safety and effectiveness such as in Ukraine. A further challenge is continued circulation of vaccine-derived poliovirus in populations with low immunity, with 28 cases reported in 2015 in countries as diverse as Madagascar, Ukraine, Laos, and Myanmar. This paper summarizes the current epidemiology of wild and vaccine-derived poliovirus, and describes the remaining challenges to eradication and innovative approaches being taken to overcome them.

Publication

  • Journal: BMC Medicine
  • Published: 14/03/2016
  • Volume: 14
  • Issue: 1
  • Pagination: 43

Author

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