TUESDAY, JUNE 19, 2018

WHO declares Congo to be polio free

The World Health Organization (WHO) recently declared that the Democratic Republic of Congo (DRC) is a “country free of wild poliovirus."

The Regional Certification Commission for Poliomyelitis Eradication in Africa (CRCA) has given the Congo a certificate that confirms the nation is free of polio. In order to receive this certification, the country must give the CRCA the complete documentation for eliminating polio throughout the nation.

There has not been a new wild poliovirus case since December 2011. The documentation confirmed that there has been almost a four-year gap that shows no polio cases in the laboratory data.

"I am confident that we will one day in polio eradication,” Dr. Felix Kabange Numbi, Congo's minister of public health, said. “This will be one of the greatest achievements of human history, and it will have a positive impact on global health for generations to come.”

Now there are just two countries that still have endemic statuses because of poliovirus: Pakistan and Afghanistan.

"We must remain vigilant and continue to vaccinate all children even if there are no more cases of wild polio, especially in remote areas and among the poorest populations,” UNICEF Representative Pascal Villeneuve said. “This result is the fruit of an exemplary partnership between the public authorities and international organizations and private foundations that have financially supported this effort for many years. Do not forget the thousands of health workers, communicators and volunteers who have united their efforts to achieve this remarkable success.”

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UNICEF - Press Releases

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