WHO, UNICEF declare end of polio outbreak in Philippines – Times of India

MANILA: The World Health Organization (WHO) and the United Nations Children’s Fund (UNICEF) hailed the Philippines on Friday for ending the polio outbreak nearly two years after the extremely infectious illness re-emerged in the Southeast Asian nation.
In a joint assertion, the UN companies mentioned the Philippines’ Department of Health (DOH) formally stopped the polio outbreak response on June 3 this 12 months. “The decision came as the virus has not been detected in a child or the environment in the past 16 months,” the assertion learn.
The companies mentioned complete outbreak response actions, together with intensified immunization and surveillance actions in affected areas of the Southeast Asian nation, curbed the unfold of the poliovirus.
The DOH introduced a polio outbreak in the Philippines on Sept. 19, 2019, after 19 years of a polio-free standing. Since then, the Philippine authorities and the WHO, the UNICEF, and different companions mounted nationwide polio campaigns to cease the unfold of
the virus.
Despite the super challenges to immunization offered by the simultaneous influence of Covid-19, the DOH had continued strong polio immunization campaigns.
In explicit, the UNICEF and the WHO lauded the DOH for enhancing coaching and mobilizing well being employees in an infection prevention and management, and supplying them with private protecting tools to allow vaccinating kids in their properties and designated well being facilities — “a global first in a country experiencing community transmission of Covid-19.”
The WHO supported the nation’s polio outbreak response by offering technical and operations help on intensifying polio surveillance, planning, making ready for and monitoring immunization campaigns, an infection prevention and management measures, and threat communication. It additionally deployed worldwide and nationwide polio specialists who offered on-the-floor technical help to the affected areas and native implementers.
“This is a major win for public health and is an excellent example of what collective efforts can attain, even in the midst of the COVID-19 pandemic,” Rabindra Abeyasinghe, WHO consultant to the Philippines, mentioned.
The UNICEF supported the DOH via vaccine procurement and supply, growth of immunization pointers, social mobilization, participating neighborhood members and influencers, and constructing the capability of DOH and native authorities items nationwide to plan and be certain that all kids are inoculated.
“The success of the polio immunization in the Philippines is proof that when we come together for children, great things happen,” UNICEF Representative to the Philippines Oyunsaikhan Dendevnorov mentioned.
Polio is a extremely infectious, crippling, and generally deadly illness that may be prevented with a vaccine. Children underneath the age of 5 are significantly weak.
The WHO mentioned the illness stays endemic now in the one two nations of Afghanistan and Pakistan, and polio would be the second illness ever to be fully eradicated when eradicated there.

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