October 2016                                Download [pdf]        
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Dear polio eradication supporter,

This month, the polio eradication programme recognised World Polio Day, marking progress against the disease and recommitting to the global goal of eradication. Following the recent setback in Nigeria, immunisation campaigns are ongoing across the region in the midst of a humanitarian crisis. Health workers around the globe continue to inspire the programme with their remarkable dedication to protecting the health of children in their communities and beyond.


24 October marked World Polio Day, which served as a moment for the world to come together to recognise progress made against polio and recommit to ending the disease once and for all. GPEI partners Rotary International and the US Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) co-hosted the fourth annual World Polio Day event in Atlanta, featuring celebrity champions and polio experts. Melinda Gates also lent her voice to the effort with a photo story celebrating the female health workers who dedicate their lives to ending polio and Bill Gates acknowledged the hard work of the millions of polio volunteers. 


© Unicef

To prevent further spread of polio across Africa, the World Health Organization (WHO) and other GPEI partners are coordinating the distribution of polio vaccines to immunise millions of children across the Lake Chad basin. The ability to prevent any spread of this disease is a barometer for success in addressing the region’s broader humanitarian crisis.


Shafiullah is both a polio victim and one of the heroes of the eradication effort, working as an advocate for polio vaccination in villages near his home in Afghanistan. © WHO Afghanistan/ Y.Khan

Shafiullah developed polio-induced paralysis at the age of five. Today, he provides vaccines in his province of Afghanistan and has encouraged 30 households to vaccinate their children over the past four months alone. Health workers all over the world like Shafiullah have made great strides in vaccinating previously-unreachable children. It is thanks to the conviction of such workers that fewer than 30 children in the world have been paralyzed by polio so far in 2016.

Innovation for eradication

Watch out for our Series on Innovations to achieve a polio-free world, starting with surveillance and vaccination in Nigeria.

Securing a polio-free Africa

A new photo story shows what’s needed to halt polio transmission across the African continent.
[Read more]

Global Citizen Recap

Global Citizens called on world leaders to end polio for good at the Global Citizen Festival in September.

SAGE October meeting

The Strategic Advisory Group of Experts on immunisation has recommended polio vaccination policies for the short-term and in the future, including the use of fractional dose IPV.
[Read more]


Wild poliovirus in 2016

- Global Total:   27 (51) 
- Global WPV1: 27 (51)
- Global WPV3: 0 (0)

Endemic: 27 (51)

- Afghanistan: 8 (13)
- Pakistan: 15 (38)
- Nigeria: 4 (0)
Data as of 25 October 2016. Numbers in brackets represent data this time in 2015.

Current case map


Reuters: Health workers race to vaccinate 41 million children against polio in Lake Chad: U.N.

NPR: Rocks And Auto Parts Were Part Of Polio Survivor's Rehab Plan

TIME: Here’s Some Promising News on World Polio Day


A number of new commitments were announced on World Polio Day:

•  Mayor Michael Bloomberg, Ray Dalio and an anonymous high net worth individual jointly donated an additional US$ 70 million to eradication efforts.

•  EasyJet partnered with UNICEF to collect donations from passengers on World Polio Day to support the polio programme, securing over £8 million to date.

•  The Canadian government announced an additional Can$ 10 million investment to WHO, fulfilling its Global Vaccine Summit pledge of Can$ 250 million.  

Heads of State, Ministers and Members of Parliament amplified their support across social media, demonstrating the “all of government” commitment to polio eradication, including:

•  Canadian Prime Minister Justin Trudeau

•  Luxembourg Prime Minister Xavier Better

•  Canadian Minister of International Development and La Francophonie, Marie-Claude Bibeau

•  UK Secretary of State for International Development, Priti Patel

•  US Secretary of Health and Human Services, Sylvia Burwell  

In September, Rotary granted WHO US$ 18.3 million for operational support, technical assistance and surveillance in endemic and high risk countries, including those in the Lake Chad region. Rotary also granted UNICEF US$ 16.86 million for operational support and social mobilization in endemic countries. More
Copyright © 2016 Global Polio Eradication Initiative, All rights reserved.

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