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Archive
January 2000

Short news items with a Post-Polio element gleaned from 'here, there and everywhere'. Contributions welcomed. Email newsbites@loncps.demon.co.uk. Please make it clear that your news item is for inclusion in NewsBites and include any source references.

28th January 2000
Polio Eradication: Kenya gets $11.6m grant from Japan.

In Africa News Online (http://www.africanews.org/) "The Nation" reports from Nairobi:

Japan yesterday gave Kenya a $11.6 million (Sh802 million) grant to develop food production and immunisation programmes countrywide. Japanese ambassador Morihisa Aoki and Finance Minister Chris Okemo signed the agreement.

The food production grant of Sh450 million is to boost food production through the purchase of fertilisers, equipment and agricultural chemicals.

The immunisation project grant under the Ministry of Health, totalled Sh352 million. It is aimed at reducing infant mortality and disability caused by polio, whooping cough and the other childhood diseases.

The grant will help in buying vaccines and equipment for all vaccination centres countrywide and strengthen the activities of Kenya Expanded Programme on Immunisation.

Mr. Aoki said that under the Polio Eradication Initiative, 20 Japan Overseas Cooperation Volunteers would be sent to Kenya.

The initiative between the two countries was started in July 1999 and runs until July 2002.

Mr. Okemo said agriculture provides employment to about 70 per cent of Kenyans and remains the country's leading foreign exchange earner.

The Jomo Kenyatta University of Agriculture and Technology, founded in 1980 through funding from the Japanese government, had trained expert agricultural manpower and carried out research.

He said Japan had given Kenya aid amounting to Sh11 billion.

Speaking on the on-going talks with IMF representatives in the country, Mr. Okemo said there was no risk of financial aid being mismanaged.

The complete text of the news report can be found at http://www.africanews.org/
east/kenya/stories/20000128/20000128_feat3.html

Notification of the above news item was received via NewsIndex http://www.newsindex.com/

For Polio eradication and vaccine related resources see our directory Polio Virus, Vaccine and Eradication

[ Index ]

27th January 2000
Opportunity for Carers in the UK to raise questions with a Minister of State.

The UK Government is due to launch a new Carer's Web Site on February 4th. In advance of the launch they are inviting points or questions for the Minister of State for Community Care. Here is the text of the announcement:

If you want to ask the Minister of State for Community Care, John Hutton, a question about the National Carers' Strategy, or make a point about your experience of being a carer, you can do so here. [see below]

Your points and questions, alongside the Minister's responses, will be revealed at the launch of the Government's new Carers' Web-site on 8 February 2000.

If you do not want your name published in this way, please just state that you are a carer and where you come from.

Thank you for taking part in the launch of the web-site.

The Carers' Web-site will be available from 8 February, at the following address: www.carers.gov.uk.

The above text and facilities to submit your points or questions can be found at http://www.doh.gov.uk/carers_anniversary.htm. That page will be available from 24 January to 4 February 2000.

[ Index ]

26th January 2000
Polio Eradication: Over 700,000 Liberian Children To Get Polio Vaccination.

In Africa News Online (http://www.africanews.org/) Peter Kahler of the Panafrican News Agency reports from Monrovia, Liberia:

About 750,000 Liberian children have been going for polio vaccination since Monday at hundreds of centres throughout the country.

The immunisation campaign, code named "Polio out of Liberia," is part of an international effort to rid the globe of the crippling disease which usually afflicts children five years old and below.

Liberian President Charles Taylor officially launched the polio eradication campaign Monday at a hospital in the eastern suburb of Monrovia when he administered the first dose of polio vaccine to a child.

The president said his government was determined to "wipe out polio" from Liberia as evidenced by the full participation of its relevant agencies and the declaration of a holiday to allow parents carry their children for the vaccine.

"Have first-hand experience of the disease in my family. Have a sister who is a victim of polio. And so I know the devastating affect of polio," Taylor said.

Over 160,000 Liberian children have been afflicted by the crippling disease, according to health minister Peter Coleman.

For 2000, the National Immunisation Days in Liberia are set for 24-25 January, 28-29 February and 27-28 March.

The exercise is supported by the US Agency for International Development, Rotary International, the Centre for Disease Control in Atlanta, Georgia, European Union, World Health Organisation and UNICF as well as a range of international and local NGOs.

Massive nation-wide awareness campaigns, to which the over 100 percent success of Liberia's 1999 anti-polio is credited, preceded Monday's vaccination.

Liberia and Sierra Leone are about the last countries in sub-Saharan Africa and the world to conduct National Immunisation Days against polio in a final global drive to wipe disease from the face of the earth.

The complete text of the news report can be found at http://www.africanews.org/
west/liberia/stories/20000126/20000126_feat2.html

Notification of the above news item was received via NewsIndex http://www.newsindex.com/

For Polio eradication and vaccine related resources see our directory Polio Virus, Vaccine and Eradication

[ Index ]

24th January 2000
Polio Eradication: FIFA and CAF join forces with WHO.

The Post of Zambia in Africa News Online (http://www.africanews.org/) reports from Lusaka:

FIFA and the African Football Confederation (CAF) will use the occasion of the 22nd African Cup of Nations in Ghana and Nigeria to support the World Health Organization (WHO) and its partners in their campaign to rid Africa of polio.

Special messages aired during radio and television coverage of the Championship, as well as in-stadium messages and signage will be among the ways in which FIFA and CAF will use Africa's prime football event to help the WHO to "Kick Polio out of Africa".

The international campaign to eradicate the disease by the end of the year 2000 is spearheaded by WHO, Rotary International and UNICEF. The "Kick Polio out of Africa" campaign will have a high profile on match days in both Ghana and Nigeria.

The complete text of the news report can be found at http://www.africanews.org/
central/zambia/stories/20000124/20000124_feat3.html

Notification of the above news item was received via NewsIndex http://www.newsindex.com/

For Polio eradication and vaccine related resources see our directory Polio Virus, Vaccine and Eradication

[ Index ]

23rd January 2000
Polio Eradication: Nepal launches 3rd phase of polio campaign.

The Modesto Bee Online/Nando Times (http://www.nandotimes.com/) carried the following Agence France-Press report from Katmandu:

Nepal on Sunday launched the third phase of an polio immunization campaign designed to protect 2.5 million children under 5 from the disease, the health ministry said.

A total of 80,000 volunteers and 16,000 health workers will be mobilized in 33 of the kingdom's 75 districts as part the World Health Organization (WHO) program to eliminate the disease, said the official with the ministry's child health division.

On Feb. 27, the workers will immunize children in 20 districts neighboring the Indian states of Bihar and Uttar Pradesh, the official said.

The campaign will move to 13 districts in the Katmandu, Bhaktapur and Lalitpur townships in the Katmandu valley on March 26.

In 1998 and 1999, the government conducted the first and second phases of the immunization campaign, protecting 6 million children under 5 in the country's 42 other districts.

The complete text of the news report can be found at http://www.nandotimes.com/
24hour/modbee/healthscience/story/
0,1655,500158277-500197260-500865945-0,00.html

Notification of the above news item was received via NewsIndex http://www.newsindex.com/

For Polio eradication and vaccine related resources see our directory Polio Virus, Vaccine and Eradication

[ Index ]

21st January 2000
CDC urges polio shots rather than oral vaccine.

The Topeka Capital Journal (http://cjonline.com/) carried the following Associated Press report from Atlanta on Friday, January 21, 2000:

The government Thursday endorsed polio shots for children instead of the oral vaccine because of the very small chance that the oral dose can lead to a polio infection.

The federal Centers for Disease Control and Prevention followed the advice of an advisory panel that decided last summer the benefits of the oral polio vaccine no longer outweigh the risks.

The agency publishes its recommended immunization schedule each January as a guide for state and local health departments and pediatricians. This year's guide also added a recommendation that children get a hepatitis A vaccine in Western states with historically high rates of the virus: Alaska, Arizona, California, Idaho, Nevada, New Mexico, Oklahoma, Oregon, South Dakota, Utah and Washington. Hepatitis A is a relatively mild form of the virus; most patients require no medical care.

The CDC also removed a diarrhea vaccine because it can cause bowel obstruction. The oral polio vaccine, developed by Dr. Albert Sabin, has been used for nearly four decades and played a major role in the elimination of polio. But because it is made with a live virus, it causes about eight people in the United States each year to become infected with polio.

The injectable vaccine developed by the medical pioneer Dr. Jonas Salk in the 1950s relies on a killed virus. Salk had long insisted his vaccine was safer, but other scientists said it was not as effective at providing lifelong immunity.

According to the new CDC recommendations, the oral vaccine should be used only in cases of widespread outbreaks, for children traveling to areas where polio is endemic or epidemic and for children whose parents stop short of pursuing all four shots in the polio regimen.

The oral vaccine's U.S. manufacturer, Wyeth-Lederle, stopped making it last year and has agreed to refund any unused supplies doctors return.

The American Academy of Pediatrics said last month its members can continue using their remaining supplies of the oral vaccine if given as the third and fourth doses. The first and second doses should be the injectable vaccine, the academy said. Dr. Melinda Wharton, the CDC's chief of childhood vaccines and preventable diseases, said the agency is investigating one report from 1998 of a child that got polio after being given the half-oral, half-injectable schedule. She said the case had not been confirmed.

Dr. Michael Gerber, a pediatrician in Bethesda, Md., and member of the pediatrics academy's infectious diseases committee, said any such risk is miniscule.

But to Informed Parents Against VAAP, a group of parents whose children contracted vaccine-associated paralytic polio, even a miniscule chance of infection is too much.

"While the risk is small, why should we have any cases?" said John Salamone, a member of the group whose 9-year-old son contracted polio from the oral vaccine in 1991.

The complete text of the news report can be found at http://cjonline.com/stories/012100/new_cdcpolio.shtml. A similar report also appeared in the The Herald at http://www.heraldnet.com/Stories/00/1/21/12015681.htm

Notification of the above news item was received via NewsIndex http://www.newsindex.com/

See also NewsBites 7th December 1999 "Group prefers polio injection." and NewsBites 18th June 1999 "New polio vaccine recommendation in U.S.A."

For Polio eradication and vaccine related resources see our directory Polio Virus, Vaccine and Eradication

[ Index ]

14th January 2000
Polio Eradication: Polio to be Eradicated Soon.

The Addis Tribune reports:

Dr. Lamiso Hayisso, vice-minister of health, has said that the country [Ethiopia] should do its level best in the coming year to eradicate polio.

Speaking at a two-day workshop, which opened at Nazret, Shoa, recently Dr. Lamiso said there were 270 polio victims under the age of 15 in the country and that surveys were being conducted on 17 contagious diseases with a view to taking preventive measures.

The workshop, organized to introduce health professionals to a five-year health strategy on the prevention of 17 contagious diseases and a one-year plan designated to eradicate polio by the year 2000, was attended by contagious disease prevention, polio vaccination and health reproductive offices in the various regions.

Meanwhile, in a strong turn-of-the-millennium appeal, the World Health Organization (WHO) and the United Nations Children's Fund (UNICEF) have urged leaders of countries where the final battle to eradicate polio is being waged to show full cooperation for the global effort.

"We are on the verge of an historic public health victory - the eradication of poliomyelitis, a disease that has caused untold suffering to millions of children in all parts of the world," WHO Director-General Gro Harlem Brundtl and UNICEF Executive Director Carol Bellamy stated in a New Year's letter to 30 heads of state in sub-Saharan Africa and South Asia.

With the eradication of polio and the eventual cessation of polio immunization, the world will save US $ 1.5 billion per year.

The complete text of the news report, no longer available, was originally found at http://AddisTribune.EthiopiaOnline.net/
Archives/2000/01/14-01-00/Polio.htm

Notification of the above news item was received via NewsIndex http://www.newsindex.com/

For Polio eradication and vaccine related resources see our directory Polio Virus, Vaccine and Eradication

[ Index ]

13th January 2000
Childhood Polio Infection May Cause CFS In Baby-Boomers.

The Post-Polio Institute Englewood Hospital And Medical Center distributed the following Press Release today.

The Post-Polio Institute
ENGLEWOOD HOSPITAL and MEDICAL CENTER

For Immediate Release . . .
Contact: Claudie Benjamin (201) 894-3486

CHILDHOOD POLIO INFECTION MAY CAUSE CHRONIC FATIGUE SYNDROME IN BABY-BOOMERS

Englewood, NJ, January 11, 2000 -- A childhood poliovirus infection may cause chronic fatigue in baby-boomers concludes a paper published in the January, 11, 2000, issue of the American Journal of Physical Medicine and Rehabilitation "Paralytic Versus 'Non-Paralytic' Polio: A Distinction without a Difference," by Dr. Richard L. Bruno, director of The Post-Polio Institute at New Jersey's Englewood Hospital and Medical Center and chairperson of the International Post-Polio Task Force.

Bruno reviewed the personal laboratory notebooks, publications and private correspondence of Dr. Albert Sabin, developer of the oral polio vaccine, regarding a 1947, Cincinnati, Ohio outbreak of the "Summer Grippe," a flu-like disease that affected more than 10,000 children. Because Summer Grippe was associated with a stiff neck -- a hallmark symptom of polio -- Sabin hospitalized and studied a dozen children. "Sabin concluded that Summer Grippe was caused by a mild form of the Type 2 poliovirus which caused a flu-like illness even though it did not cause paralysis," said Bruno. However, when Sabin infected monkeys with poliovirus from the Summer Grippe children, spinal cord and brain stem neurons were killed just as they would have been by a paralytic poliovirus. "Both the Summer Grippe and paralytic polioviruses damage the brain stem," Bruno continued. "Sabin showed us that even a 'mild' poliovirus infection could cause neuron damage that, although not apparent in terms of causing polio-like symptoms, was very real."

However, Bruno reports that another "mild" poliovirus outbreak did cause symptoms. In the very next year, 1948, over 1,000 Icelanders became ill with a flu-like illness causing stiff neck, some muscle weakness, and fatigue. While many of those with "Iceland Disease" recovered, some who became ill in 1948 still have fatigue today. "Iceland Disease was also apparently caused by a relatively mild Type 2 poliovirus," said Bruno, "but one that did more severe and therefore more apparent damage to the brain stem -- damage that caused chronic fatigue." Fifteen years of research at The Post-Polio Institute has found evidence of brain stem damage in polio survivors who have fatigue associated with Post-Polio Syndrome, including lesions on MRI of the brain, attention deficits on neuropsychologic testing, reduced levels of brain activating hormones, and brain wave slowing. "These abnormalities are evidence of damage to the brain stem neurons that activate the brain -- the brain activating system that keeps the brain awake and focuses attention -- and they are identical to abnormalities seen in patients with Chronic Fatigue Syndrome (CFS)," said Bruno. "We believe that brain activating system damage causes fatigue in both polio survivors and those with CFS."

Between 1934 and 1954, the year the polio vaccine was developed, nine outbreaks of CFS occurred either at the same time as polio epidemics or affected the staff at polio hospitals. "In fact, the first CFS outbreak was in 1934, sickening the staff at the Los Angeles County polio hospital," said Bruno. And, just as in Iceland, some who were became fatigued in L.A. in 1934 remained fatigued for decades. "The symptoms of polio and CFS were so similar," said Bruno, "that 48% of the patients in the CFS outbreaks between 1934 and 1954 were thought initially to have had non-paralytic polio."

Sabin's Summer Grippe, Iceland Disease and the long association between polio and CFS have important implications for those diagnosed with Post-Polio Syndrome and CFS today," according to Bruno. Englewood Hospital and Medical Center's The Post-Polio Institute treats many middle-aged adults with fatigue who had non-paralytic polio as children. "Albert Sabin showed us that even a mild poliovirus infection can damage the brain activating system setting the stage for fatigue to develop later in life," said Bruno. The Post-Polio Institute's experience is supported by the 1987 U.S. National Health Interview Survey which found that 21% of those who had had non- paralytic polio report fatigue in mid-life. "The one million North Americans who had non-paralytic polio must be assertive," said Bruno, "telling their doctors that both paralytic and non-paralytic polio survivors develop late-onset fatigue."

An epidemiological study by Dr. Leonard Jason, published in the October 11, 1999, issue of the Archives of Internal Medicine, found that half of the estimated 836,000 Americans with CFS are at least 40 years old. Jason concluded that baby-boomers may be at greater risk for CFS. "Potentially half of those diagnosed today with CFS may in fact have had Summer Grippe or undiagnosed non-paralytic polio as children in the years before the polio vaccine became available," said Bruno. "They may also have brain activating system damage that causes chronic fatigue."

"There is no question that neither the naturally-occurring poliovirus nor the Sabin oral polio vaccine causes CFS today," said Bruno. "But the possibility of a non-paralytic poliovirus infection in childhood causing chronic fatigue in middle-aged baby-boomers is a reason for hope." The Post-Polio Institute's research has found that conserving energy, daytime rests breaks, stopping activities before fatigue starts, and a higher-protein diet significantly reduce symptoms of fatigue."

"Paralytic Versus 'Non-Paralytic' Polio: A Distinction without a Difference" can be found at http://members.aol.com/ppseng/np.html. Dr. Bruno's article on the Summer Grippe can be found at http://members.aol.com/ppseng/Stealth.html and on Parallels Between PPS and CFS at http://members.aol.com/ppseng/Parallels.html.

End of Press Release

NewsBites Editorial Note

Dr. Bruno's article "Paralytic Versus 'Non-Paralytic' Polio: A Distinction without a Difference" is one of several articles on 'Non-Paralytic' Polio published in the January/February 2000 issue of the American Journal of Physical Medicine and Rehabilitation. One of them, "Late Functional Loss In Non-paralytic Polio," by Marcia Falconer, Ph.D. and Edward Bollenbach, M.A. follows-on from "Non-Paralytic Polio and PPS" by the same authors published by the Lincolnshire Post-Polio Network in January 1999.

Articles by Dr. Bruno can be found in our Lincolnshire Post-Polio Library. See the catalogue for:
Bruno, Richard L., Ph.D.

See also our Directory entries for:
The Post-Polio Institute, Englewood (NJ) Hospital and Medical Center Dr. Bruno
The Harvest Center

[ Index ]

10th January 2000

Obituaries: Yvonne Duffy.

Detroit Free Press (http://www.freep.com/) writes of Yvonne Duffy:

Ms. Duffy died Jan. 4 when the breathing tube on her ventilator came loose.

Ms. Duffy, 60, contracted polio when she was a child. The illness left her unable to use her legs or one arm. She had been on a ventilator because of respiratory difficulties.

Ms. Duffy's Disabled in America column appeared in The Way We Live section of the Free Press for almost six years.

The full text of the obituary can be found at http://www.freep.com/news/obituaries/other10_20000110.htm

[ Index ]

Polio Eradication: "Historic public health victory" over polio near - UN.

Africa News Online (http://www.africanews.org/) reports from the United Nations:

The World Health Organization (WHO) and the United Nations Children's Fund (UNICEF) have issued a call to leaders of countries where polio still exists to give full cooperation to the global effort to eradicate the disease by the end of this year. "We are on the verge of an historic public health victory: the eradication of poliomyelitis, a disease that has caused untold suffering to millions of children," Gro Harlem Brundtland, WHO Director-General, and Carol Bellamy, UNICEF Executive Director, said in a letter to 30 heads of state in sub-Saharan Africa and South Asia released today.

The success of the drive to eliminate the disease now hinges on efforts under way in these 30 countries, they added, many of which are affected by conflict or are reservoirs of the poliovirus. Begun in 1988, the global initiative to eradicate polio by the end of the year 2000 is led by WHO, UNICEF and Rotary International.

Dr. Brundtland and Ms. Bellamy urged heads of State in the 30 countries to provide leadership for extra immunization activities, allocate resources for national immunization days and enable truces in areas of conflict. In New Delhi, on her first official visit of the new century, Dr. Brundtland said India -- which hosts 70 per cent of the world's remaining polio cases -- was key to successfully eradicating the disease worldwide by the end of the year 2000.

She also paid tribute to India's "phenomenal efforts" towards polio eradication. "In the Year 2000 -- the target year for polio eradication -- we have a window of opportunity to defeat this disease forever," Dr. Brundtland said at the launch of the 'Final Push for Polio,' in the Indian capital, attended by over 300 delegates including ambassadors from key polio-endemic countries and representatives from other agencies involved in the initiative.

In New York, Ms. Bellamy urged a renewed international effort to wipe out the last traces of the disease. "As long as a single new case of polio exists, children everywhere are at risk of this disease," she said.

Since the launch of the polio eradication initiative in 1988, the number of polio cases had fallen from an estimated 350,000 to some 5,200 reported cases in 1999. The proportion of the world's children living in polio-infected areas has dropped from 90 per cent to less than half, and the disease has been eradicated from the Americas, Europe, the Western Pacific, much of the Middle East and most of northern and southern Africa.

The complete text of the news report can be found at http://www.africanews.org/
atlarge/stories/20000110/20000110_feat9.html

Notification of the above news item was received via NewsIndex http://www.newsindex.com/

For Polio eradication and vaccine related resources see our directory Polio Virus, Vaccine and Eradication

[ Index ]

Polio Eradication: New Kensington woman heads to India to fight polio.

Tony Klimko, Staff writer at the Valley News Dispatch (http://www.valleynewsdispatch.com/) writes:

On Wednesday Cecelia Carson will go to India to help fight one of the deadliest killers and cripplers ever to prey on the vast sub-continent.

The New Kensington native will not be hunting tigers or king cobras, but a disease which has plagued mankind since the first human learned to walk erect - polio.

In the past polio struck down millions each year without respect to position or power.

President Franklin Delano Roosevelt was able to get the United States out of the Great Depression and on the way to victory in World War II, but stricken by polio early in life he was barely able to get out of his wheelchair.

It was not until Pittsburgh's Dr. Jonas Salk perfected a viable polio vaccine in the 1950s and 1960s that American parents could sleep without nightmares of their children being crippled or confined to an "iron lung" ventilator by the ravages of the disease.

But America is a rich country where medical care is often taken for granted.

In 1992, Carson,65, visited India and witnessed what the word poverty really means.

"The poverty in India is incredible. Not like we think of it here. This is the people really sleeping in the streets type of poverty," Carson said.

And far too often death and disease are poverty's handmaidens because there is no money for health care.

To fight these killers the Rotary Club International has assembled combat teams armed with the latest weapon against polio, an oral vaccine which is effective and easy to administer.

This is where Carson and two other members of the New Kensington Rotary come into play.

She will travel to India and administer the vaccine to children.

Two other members of the New Kensington Rotary, Dr. Manmohan Luthra and his wife, Dr. Damyanti Luthra, are already in India as an advance guard setting up a headquarters for the Rotarians at St. Stephen Hospital in the city of Mumbai formerly known as Bombay.

They will be joined by Carson and 10 members of Pittsburgh area Rotary clubs.

This contingent will be joined by 30 Rotarians from Japan.

"We will be there for about 12 days during which time we hope to administer the oral vaccine to about one million children," Carson said.

This is part of Rotary International's worldwide search and destroy mission against polio, Carson explained.

"The goal of Rotary International is to eliminate polio by the year 2005," Carson said.

As president-elect of the New Kensington Rotary and as the first woman ever to become a member of the local club Carson feels the goal can be accomplished with the help of people like the Luthras and Donald Arnheim of Pittsburgh, organizer of the local project.

"When you have people like these working together on a project for Rotary you know it is going to be a success," she said.

This can do attitude is typical of Carson.

From 1966 to 1976 she was community relations officer for the New Kensington Urban Redevelopment Authority, trying despite the odds to get the city back on its economic feet without kicking the poor of the community into the cold.

She organized the New Kensington Municipal Credit Union in 1962 and is now its manager.

This operation has determined Carson to give the children of India the biggest bang for the buck in terms of vaccine.

The trip to India will not be a luxury junket disguised as a humanitarian mission with those on the trip eating at five-star restaurants and staying at first class hotels.

"To cut down on expenses we will stay will fellow Rotarians and we will all pay our own way. It's costing us about $3,000 each, but it's worth it for the feeling you get from helping those children," Carson said.

The Rotarians did get some financial help with the project.

Carson said Computer Czar Bill Gates and Media Mogul Ted Turner contributed a total of $78,000 to the project.

"What gets me really psyched about all of this is the way people are working together and what we want to do. Helping others gives you a feeling you can't describe. I'm just happy to be a part of this," Carson said.

The complete text of the news report can be found at http://www.valleynewsdispatch.com/vn40110.html

Notification of the above news item was received via NewsIndex http://www.newsindex.com/

For Polio eradication and vaccine related resources see our directory Polio Virus, Vaccine and Eradication

[ Index ]

Polio Eradication: Liberian Daily News Bulletin.

In Africa News Online (http://www.africanews.org/) Star Radio reports:

The Ministry of Health is urging religious and political leaders to join the campaign against polio. Minister Peter Coleman says civic leaders should assist by mobilizing the people for the anti polio vaccine. The Ministry is expected to begin the next round of the polio vaccination later this month. The ministry has targeted about 700'000 children to be vaccinated. Minister Coleman said religious and political leaders would help in achieving this goal. Children under five years are to be given the anti polio vaccination throughout the country. This will be the third round of vaccination against the crippling disease in two years. More than 600'000 children were vaccinated against polio last year.

Star Radio is staffed by Liberian journalists and managed by the Swiss NGO Fondation Hirondelle (http://www.hirondelle.org/) with financing from the U.S. Agency for International Development through the International Foundation for Election Systems.

STAR radio, Sekou Toure Avenue, Mamba point, Monrovia, Liberia. Tel: (+231) 226820 Fax:(+231) 227360; E-mail:star@liberia.net. Fondation Hirondelle 3, rue Traversiere 1018 Lausanne, Suisse Tel: (+4121) 647 2805 Fax: (+41 21) 647 4469; E-mail: info@hirondelle.org.

The complete text of the news report can be found at http://www.africanews.org/
west/liberia/stories/20000110/20000110_feat2.html

Notification of the above news item was received via NewsIndex http://www.newsindex.com/

For Polio eradication and vaccine related resources see our directory Polio Virus, Vaccine and Eradication

[ Index ]

6th January 2000
Polio Eradication: Final push to wipe out polio.

BBC News Online (http://news.bbc.co.uk/), Thursday, 6 January, 2000, 09:58 GMT:

African and Asian countries are being urged to make a final push to wipe out polio, a crippling virus that afflicts young children.

The World Health Organisation, along with the United Nations Children's Fund (Unicef), have written to 30 nations saying that success hinges on their efforts.

In their letter, Dr Brundtland and Unicef executive director Carol Bellamy appealed in particular for truces to be organised in war zones so that children can be vaccinated.

Launching a World Health Organisation (WHO) campaign "Final Push for Polio Eradication in Year 2000" in New Delhi, Dr Brundtland said the world was on the verge of a major public health breakthrough.

"If we fail now, we fail the world's children," she said.

Appeal for truces.

"The goal will become much more elusive, much harder and more expensive to achieve," she said.

Polio has been wiped out in North, Central and South America, Europe and the Western Pacific region as well as much of the Middle East and most of northern and southern Africa.

But it remains active in sub-Saharan Africa and south Asia. India, which has substantially stepped up vaccination campaigns, accounts for 70% of the remaining known cases.

It is particularly difficult for health organisations to administer polio vaccine in the conflict zones of Africa, such as Angola and the Democratic Republic of Congo.

Dr Brundtland said that in DR Congo, health workers continued to vaccinate children even though an immunisation ceasefire had temporarily broken down.

Polio is an infectious virus which causes paralysis and even death. There is no cure, but, given a few drops of vaccine, children can be protected for life.

Wiped out.

The number of cases recorded annually has now dropped to just over 5,000 from more than 350,000 when the campaign of mass vaccinations started in 1988.

The campaign concentrates on mass vaccinations, or National Immunisation Days (NIDs), which aim to vaccinate every single child in a specific population on two separate days, one month apart.

The cost of the campaign is put at a $1bn and the WHO says there is currently a shortfall of £300m.

A BBC science correspondent says it remains to be seen whether polio really will be eradicated by the end of this year.

But, he says, the WHO is confident that it will soon be the second disease to be totally wiped out - joining smallpox in the pages of medical history.

The complete text of the news report can be found at http://news.bbc.co.uk/hi/english/world/africa/newsid_592000/592808.stm

Notification of the above news item was received via NewsIndex http://www.newsindex.com/

For Polio eradication and vaccine related resources see our directory Polio Virus, Vaccine and Eradication

[ Index ]

DATELINE
28th January 2000
Polio Eradication: Kenya gets $11.6m grant from Japan.
*
27th January 2000
Opportunity for Carers in the UK to raise questions with a Minister of State.
*
26th January 2000
Polio Eradication: Over 700,000 Liberian Children To Get Polio Vaccination.
*
24th January 2000
Polio Eradication: FIFA and CAF join forces with WHO.
*
23rd January 2000
Polio Eradication: Nepal launches 3rd phase of polio campaign.
*
21st January 2000
CDC urges polio shots rather than oral vaccine.
*
14th January 2000
Polio Eradication: Polio to be Eradicated Soon.
*
13th January 2000
Childhood Polio Infection May Cause CFS In Baby-Boomers.
*
10th January 2000
Item 1
Obituaries: Yvonne Duffy
and
Item 2
Polio Eradication: "Historic public health victory" over polio near - UN
and
Item 3
Polio Eradication: New Kensington woman heads to India to fight polio
and
Item 4
Polio Eradication: Liberian Daily News Bulletin.
*
6th January 2000
Polio Eradication: Final push to wipe out polio.
*
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Document preparation: Chris Salter, Original Think-tank, Cornwall, United Kingdom.
Primary Document Reference: <URL:http://www.ott.zynet.co.uk/polio/lincolnshire/archive/nbit200001.html>
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