Wild poliovirus in the Horn of
The Horn of Africa is currently experiencing an outbreak of wild poliovirus type 1 (WPV1). A 4-month-old girl near
In addition, a case of WPV1 in Banadir [Banaadir],
In response to the outbreak, the 1st vaccination campaign, reaching 440 000 children began on 14 May 2013 in Somalia and a 2nd round of vaccination is planned for 26 May 2013 in synchronization with the affected parts of Kenya.
The risk to neighbouring countries is deemed as very high, due to large-scale population movements across the Horn of Africa and persistent immunity gaps in some areas. Dadaab hosts a major refugee camp, housing nearly 500 000 persons from across the Horn of Africa.
An alert for enhanced surveillance for polio has been issued to all countries across the Horn of Africa, highlighting the need to conduct active searches for any suspected cases. All countries are urged to rapidly identify sub-national surveillance gaps and to take measures to fill the gaps.
In 2005, polio spread east across the African continent, and into
Some areas of
WHO's International Travel and Health recommends that all travellers to and from polio-infected areas be fully vaccinated against polio.
[New information in the report above since the last update is that 2 healthy contacts of the polio case in Dadaab, Kenya were found to be positive carriers of WPV1 [wild poliovirus type 1]. The reminder of the high population movement in the area and the potential impact of circulation of WPV1 in the area is sobering.
Date: Mon 20 May 2012
Officials say gunmen have killed a policeman guarding a polio vaccination team in northwestern
Local government administrator Faramosh Khan says the gunmen attacked on Monday [20 May 2013] in the town of
No one has claimed responsibility for the shooting, but suspicion will likely fall on Islamic militants suspected in similar attacks.
Jehanzeb Dawar, a senior regional health official, said a total of 624 teams are taking part in the latest push in Bajur to vaccinate more than 220 000 children. The teams re-launched the drive after taking a couple of months off because of past attacks on vaccination teams in the country.
It's unclear whether the campaign will continue after Monday's [20 May 2013] attack.
Communicated by: ProMED-mail
(The continued violence against vaccination workers in the known polio endemic areas [
Phone: +27 (011) 025 3297
Fax: +27 087 9411350 / 1
Postal address: SASTM, PO Box 8216, Greenstone, 1616, South Africa
Physical address: SASTM, 27 Linksfield Road Block 2 a Dunvegan Edenvale
Registered as a Nonprofit Organisation 063-296-NPO
The content and opinions are neither pre-screened nor endorsed by the SASTM. The content should neither be interpreted nor quoted as inherently accurate or authoritative.
The information provided in SASTM Newsflashes is collected from various news sources, health agencies and government agencies. Although the information is believed to be accurate, any express or implied warranty as to its suitability for any purpose is categorically disclaimed. In particular, this information should not be construed to serve as medical advice for any individual. The health information provided is general in nature, and may not be appropriate for all persons. Medical advice may vary because of individual differences in such factors as health risks, current medical conditions and treatment, allergies, pregnancy and breast feeding, etc. In addition, global health risks are constantly evolving and changing. International travelers should consult a qualified physician for medical advice prior to departure.