Tuesday, October 28, 2008

Global Update - Polio Spreads to New Countries and Increases Where It’s Endemic - NYTimes.com

Global Update - Polio Spreads to New Countries and Increases Where It’s Endemic - NYTimes.com:
"Polio infections are increasing and spreading to new countries, according to case counts recently released by the World Health Organization.

Since April, outbreaks have been found in 10 countries beyond the 4 in which polio is considered endemic — Afghanistan, India, Nigeria and Pakistan. And in those four countries, the number of cases is more than double the number found by this time in 2007. ..."
This is a reminder that our complacency in the Western world regarding such diseases is a bit misplaced. I grew up having had both the Salk and the Sabin vaccines, and remember the relief I felt when all you needed to do was take a sugar cube with a drop of vaccine to gain immunity from polio. Unfortunately, in many parts of the world childhood diarrhea makes oral vaccines ineffective, thus making the injections necessary.

2 comments:

Stushie said...

This is so sad to read because it's completely unnecessary.

As a kid in Scotland, I had a number of friends with polio. We didn't get a vaccine - we received our treatment via a sugar cube into which the vaccine was injected.

Denis Hancock said...

I agree that this is totally unnecessary. The problem is many or even most of the nations where polio is endemic are also highly suspicious of the developed nations.

I wonder what we can do?