Friday, October 25, 2019

World Polio Day 2019: All you need to know

  ADMIN       Friday, October 25, 2019

World Polio Day 2019: All you need to know

Rotary International established the World Polio Day over a decade ago to commemorate the birth of Jonas Salk, who led the first team to develop a vaccine against poliomyelitis.

 The use of inactivated vaccine of poliovirus and subsequent widespread use of the oral poliovirus which was developed by Albert Sabin led to the establishment of the Global Polio Eradication Initiative (GPEI) in 1988.

 According to WHO, by 2013, GPEI had reduced polio worldwide by 99%. Polio is a fatal infectious disease. There is no cure, but due to safe and effective vaccines, it can be prevented. That is through immunization it can be prevented. For eradication of polio, the strategy was to provide immunization to almost every child until transmission stops and to make world polio-free.

Facts about Polio:

- Polio is caused by poliovirus and most of the time polio infections present no symptoms.

- Women who are pregnant are more susceptible to polio.

- Polio can spread easily from person to person.

- Nigeria, Pakistan, and Afghanistan are the only three countries in which polio is still prevalent.

- Non-paralytic polio is known as abortive poliomyelitis which leads to flu-like symptoms and these symptoms last for a few days or weeks.

- In Paralytic polio, the virus enters motor neurons where it replicates and destroys the cells. These cells are present in the spinal cord, brain stem, or motor cortex. These areas of the n are important in controlling movements.

- Paralytic polio is classified as Spinal polio, Bulbar polio, and Bulbospinal polio.

- There are two vaccines for polio namely, Inactivated poliovirus (IPV) and oral polio vaccine (OPV).

Therefore, Polio is an infectious disease which can be spread from person to person and may lead to paralysis, breathing problem or even death. For polio eradication, World Polio Day is observed on 24 October every year.


World Polio Day Theme 2019 is yet to come!

World Polio Day Theme 2018 – “End Polio Now”.

World Polio Day Theme 2017 – “A celebration of the unsung heroes of Polio eradication”.

World Polio Day Theme 2016 – “End Polio now, make history today”.

World Polio Day Theme 2015 – “End Polio Now: Make History Today”.


World Polio Day 2019 will be observed on Thursday, 24th October 2019.

The day is observed to raise awareness for polio vaccination and eradication of polio.

Rotary Club of Oldmeldrum, a small town village in Scotland will be illuminating the Town Hall with Purple color.  The color in a way supports the vaccination campaign, as those who are vaccinated; have to dip their little finger in purple color.

The World Health Organization (WHO) released a statement on Monday, 21st October, that it will be organizing events at the city of Cairo, the capital of Egypt, to gather support for the Global Polio Eradication Initiative (GPEI). WHO with the help of associates is reaching out to government, political leaders and communities to encourage them to support the campaigns.

An announcement declaring the successful eradication of the -3 Poliovirus is also expected to be made this World Polio Day.

Meanwhile, in India, polio drives are expected to be organized by hospitals, schools and associate organizations. Communities will be informed about the simple method of immunization and how it saves them from a lifelong disability.


The World Polio Day is celebrated with only one prime objective, that is – to completely eradicate polio from all the parts of the world, making the world ‘Polio Free’.

 The occasion also commemorates the birth of Jonas Salk, who led the team for developing the vaccine for Poliomyelitis, along with commemorating the efforts of millions of dedicated employees and volunteers of the organizations committed to the cause.

Though the disease is eradicated from most of the countries, it still affects some of the most marginalized sections and poorest people in Afghanistan, Pakistan, and Nigeria.

 In spite of the success, if we fail to completely eradicate this highly infectious disease, there is a good possibility of it reappearing in the coming decades.

 Therefore, the main purpose of World Polio Day is to eradicate Poliovirus completely from the world and ensure vaccination of the last child belonging to the most marginalized section of the society.

The day also provides a platform to the organizations to raise necessary funds for the programs as it requires billions of dollars to successfully vaccinate every child in the world.

 On the World Polio Day 2017, the Rotary International and the Bill and Malinda Gates Foundation together committed to raising 450 billion dollars for eradicating polio globally.

 With a huge and dedicated force of employees, volunteers and local public and administration, oral vaccination is provided to every infant, making a step towards ‘Complete Eradication of Polio’.


Thanks for reading World Polio Day 2019: All you need to know

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