Rotary, UNICEF fight to eradicate polio In September, the WHO declared Nigeria polio-free, leaving only two countries in the world that have never stopped transmission of the wild poliovirus: Afghanistan and Pakistan.

Rotary International volunteers travelled to a remote region of northeastern Uganda to vaccinate children against polio.
Rotary International volunteers travelled to a remote region of northeastern Uganda to vaccinate children against polio. Photo: Jon Riera for Rotary International

Polio is a highly contagious, paralysing and potentially fatal disease that can strike at any age, but mainly affects children under age 5.

Polio is incurable, but easily preventable with a simple vaccine.

In September, the World Health Organisation declared Nigeria polio-free, leaving only two countries in the world that have never stopped transmission of the wild poliovirus: Afghanistan and Pakistan.

To stay polio-free, countries must maintain high routine immunisation and sensitive surveillance.

In 1988, UNICEF and Rotary International formed a partnership dedicated to eradicating polio worldwide once and for all.

Every year, hundreds of Rotary members work side-by-side with health workers to vaccinate children in polio-affected countries.

Since UNICEF and Rotary began their partnership, both organisations, as members of the Global Polio Eradication Initiative, have played a fundamental role in dramatically decreasing the number of polio-endemic countries.

Just 22 polio cases were confirmed worldwide in 2017, a reduction of more than 99.9 per cent since the 1980s, when the world saw about 1,000 cases per day.

No child should ever suffer from polio.

Please support UNICEF and Rotary International’s efforts to vaccinate every child and eradicate polio once and for all.

Source: Forbes

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