India Is Polio Free Nation: But, Still Suffers from 18,000 cases of Non Polio Acute Flaccid Paralysis

World Polio Day, IIHMR, Jaipur, Polio, ndian Institute of Health Management and Research University, IIHMR University Jaipur
Jaipur : World Polio Day celebrates globally on 24th October each year, Indian Institute of Health Management and Research, University, shared its views on the development and steps taken by India to eradicate the epidemic. 

Dr. SD Gupta, President, IIHMR University said, “It’s been decades that India had put up a fight against the Polio Epidemic and it’s been three years since the last case was reported. The World Health Organization declared India ‘Polio-Free’ in 2014 which is a significant achievement in the history of Public Health. However, till date Nigeria, Pakistan and Afghanistan still suffer from the Polio Virus. ”

Even after India being declared free of the wild polio virus, there have been many cases announcing the rise in Non-Polio acute Flaccid Paralysis within the country.

Dr. Gupta expressed that, “In spite of the World Health Organization declaring India a Polio- Free of the ‘Wild Type Polio’ virus, the country has seen an increase in the cases of Non-Polio Paralysis which is a huge cause of concern. According to a report, in 2004, 12,000 cases of non-polio paralysis were reported which increased by 2012 to 53,563 cases for a national rate of 12 per 100,000 children."

He further said that, "According to the data published by the Ministry of Health and family Welfare in July 2015, the total number of Non-Polio Acute Flaccid Paralysis (NPAFP) cases across the country have been about 18,141 out of which 668 prevail in Rajasthan, 102 in Telangana, 5918 in Uttar Pradesh, 385 in Karnataka, 865 in Maharashtra, 326 in Delhi, 3 in arunachal Pradesh, 5034 in Bihar, 339 in Gujarat, 749 in Madhya Pradesh, 144 in Kerala, 63 in Himachal Pradesh, 974 in West Bengal, 264 in Tamil Nadu, 607 in Odisha, 76 in Jammu and Kashmir and 180 in Andhra Pradesh.”

In order to mitigate the risks of the importation of the polio virus from other countries, India has been taking strong measures with more than 100 vaccination posts along the international borders of India with Nepal, Pakistan, Bangladesh, Myanmar and Bhutan to administer oral polio vaccine drops throughout the year to all children below five years entering India.

Environmental surveillance through testing of sewage samples for polio is functioning strategically at Mumbai, Delhi, Bihar, West Bengal and Punjab. India has also made polio vaccination a mandatory requirement for travellers irrespective of age coming from and going to polio infected countries.

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