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Gunmen In Pakistan Kill Police Officer Escorting Polio Vaccination Workers

In the latest round of violence affecting health workers in Pakistan, “[g]unmen riding on a motorcycle shot and killed a police officer protecting polio workers during a U.N.-backed vaccination campaign in northwestern Pakistan on Tuesday, the police said,” the Associated Press reports (Khan, 1/29). The policeman, who was escorting two…

News Outlets Examine Bill Gates’ Commitment To Fighting Disease Globally

“This week the billionaire philanthropist Bill Gates” — co-chair of the Bill & Melinda Gates Foundation — “will deliver the annual BBC Richard Dimbleby Lecture in which he will spell out his commitment to ridding the world of [polio] which can cause paralysis and even death within hours,” BBC News…

Polio Eradication Must Fit Into Larger Public Health, Development Goals

“The tragic murders of nine anti-polio workers in Pakistan last month, followed by the New Year’s Day killing of seven more local community development workers, was both a wake-up call to the global polio eradication effort in its current form, and a ‘canary in the mine’ regarding the deteriorating state…

Strain Of Polio From Pakistan Found In Egyptian Sewers; Vaccination Drives Planned

“Pakistani health officials Monday called for infants leaving the country to be issued polio vaccinations at airports after virus samples linked to a southern Pakistani city were discovered in Egypt,” Agence France-Presse reports. “Two sewage samples from Cairo were analyzed and found to resemble a recently discovered strain in the Pakistani city…

WHO Recommends Switching To Injectable Polio Vaccine

“[T]his month the World Health Organization (WHO) in Geneva, Switzerland, proposed a shift in [polio] vaccination strategy from oral vaccines to injected ones that may have to be administered in clinics,” Nature reports, adding, “The change is needed to mop up the last remaining pockets of polio, but experts say that it…

WHO Presents ‘2012 In Review’ Photo Essay

“Key public health milestones were reached in 2012, including the end of polio transmission in India and meeting the Millennium Development Goal target on drinking water ahead of schedule,” the WHO reports in a summary of a “2012 In Review” photo essay. Among other accomplishments, “WHO published new statistics highlighting the growing problem…

CDC Releases Update On Polio Eradication Efforts

The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) recently released an update on its polio eradication efforts. “The eradication of polio is an important priority for the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC). We are closer than we have ever been to eradicating polio and it is critical that we take…

Blog Posts Address Progress In, Challenges To Polio Eradication Efforts

Following the murders of several Pakistani polio vaccinators in December 2012 and India’s recognition of being free from the disease for two years on January 13, two blog posts address efforts to eradicate polio. Siddharth Chatterjee, Guardian’s “Poverty Matters Blog”: “Thanks to India’s success, we are now closer than ever to eliminating…

India Marks Two Years Since Last Diagnosed Polio Case

On January 13, India “completed two years since the last case of the crippling disease was reported … a huge achievement for a country that as recently as 2009 reported 741 cases of polio — more than any other country in the world, and almost half of cases reported globally…

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