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WHO Officially Declares India Polio-Free

News outlets report on the WHO’s announcement on Thursday of India’s polio-free status.

Associated Press: India is polio-free after 3 years with no new case
“…The World Health Organization formally declared India polio-free on Thursday, after three years with no new cases. It said the milestone means the entire Southeast Asian region, home to a quarter of the world’s population, is considered free of the disease…” (Banerjee, 3/27).

BBC News: World now 80% polio free, World Health Organization says
“The World Health Organization has declared its South East Asia region polio-free. The certification is being hailed a ‘historic milestone’ in the global fight to eradicate the deadly virus. It comes after India officially recorded three years without a new case of polio…” (Mazumdar, 3/27).

Reuters: India declared polio-free, but global risks persist
“The World Health Organization declared India free of the crippling polio virus on Thursday, making the country’s almost two-decade-long, multi-billion-dollar effort one of the biggest public health achievements in recent times…” (Bhalla, 3/27).

U.N. News Centre: On path to global eradication, U.N. health agency certifies 11 Asian nations free of polio
“The United Nations World Health Organization (WHO) today certified as polio-free 11 countries in Asia that together are home to a quarter of the global population. Bangladesh, Bhutan, Democratic People’s Republic of Korea, India, Indonesia, Maldives, Myanmar, Nepal, Sri Lanka, Thailand and Timor-Leste constitute WHO’s South-east Asia Region…” (3/27).

Wall Street Journal: Q&A: India Eliminates Polio
“At 2:31 p.m. Thursday, India was officially declared free of polio, a victory over a disease that once infected hundreds of Indian children a day. This is one of the biggest recent public health achievements worldwide. … Rotary International has been a key player in India’s elimination of polio, contributing some 300,000 volunteers in the past three years to deliver vaccines, monitor areas of outbreaks, and publicize countrywide immunization dates…” (Lalwani, 3/27).