CDC enhances capacity against polio

The U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention recently increased its commitment to eradicating polio.

The CDC announced that the world would not eliminate the crippling disease by the end of the year, but said that it is critical to take advantage of recent gains.

Last year, CDC Director Dr. Thomas Frieden activated the CDC's Emergency Operations Center in order to strengthen the agency's engagement with other world health bodies through the Global Polio Eradication Initiative.

"A total of 422 personnel have worked in the EOC and in the field since the activation on December 2, 2011, to support CDC's headquarters polio eradication efforts," the CDC announced. "Of these, 120 personnel have completed 243 field deployments to Angola, Chad, Nigeria, Cote d'Ivoire, and other areas. On a daily basis, an average of 70-80 CDC personnel are working in the EOC."

The CDC has also continued to foster strong relationships with its major partners, including the World Health Organization, the United Nations Children's Fund, Rotary International and the Bill and Melinda Gates Foundation.

"If we fail to get over the finish line, we will need to continue expensive control measures for the indefinite future," Frieden said. "More importantly, without eradication, a resurgence of polio could paralyze more than 200,000 children worldwide every year within a decade."