Academic journal article Bulletin of the World Health Organization

Largest Ever Polio Vaccination Campaign

Academic journal article Bulletin of the World Health Organization

Largest Ever Polio Vaccination Campaign

Article excerpt

WHO and its partners launched the largest ever global polio immunization campaign in October to reach more than 300 million children to quell an epidemic in Africa that threatens to paralyse millions of children.

The ultimate goal is to stamp out the last traces of the disease worldwide. The immunization campaign kicked off on 8 October in West and central Africa, where health workers aimed to vaccinate 80 million children in 25 countries in four days.

If successful, it will be a major boost to the 16-year global polio eradication campaign led by WHO, the United Nations Children's Fund (UNICEF), Rotary International and the United States Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC).

Dr David Heymann, WHO Representative for Polio Eradication, said it may finally be possible to halt transmission of the virus in Asia by the end of this year, while halting transmission of the polio virus in Africa could take until the end of 2005.

Four million health workers and volunteers went from house to house to administer the oral polio vaccine to children less than five years old across Africa and Asia. …

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