Polio, a disease once thought to have been all but wiped from the planet, is making a comeback.
Cases of the more tenacious polio virus, labelled WPV1 (Wild Polio Virus 1), are turning up in Pakistan, DR Congo, Chad, and China.
The concern is that with vaccination rates falling because ‘smart modern’ parents are electing not to have their children vaccinated or because hundreds of thousands of children in many countries simply don’t turn up to vaccination campaigns that polio may start to spread. Especially with the world’s much higher population densities now and also with people, even relatively poor people, travelling further and more often than was the case 50 years ago.
Due to the increasing outbreaks of polio Pakistan is about to kick off a new country-wide vaccination campaign but they admit that thousands of children are likely to be missed.