Global Polio Eradication Initiative: 2005 Annual Report
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Global Polio Eradication Initiative: 2005 Annual Report

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  • Alternative Title:
    GPEI annual report 2005;Impact of the intensified eradication effort;
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    This report measures progress achieved against the stated milestones of the Global Polio Eradication Initiative Strategic Plan 2004-2008, for the year 2005. In 2005, following two of the most challenging years in polio eradication, the world moved several critical milestones closer to eradication. Egypt and Niger successfully interrupted indigenous polio virus transmission, reducing the number of polio-endemic countries from six to four - the lowest in history. By the end of 2005, India and Pakistan were recording their lowest levels ever of polio transmission. New vaccines targeting type-specific polio - monovalent oral polio vaccines (mOPVs) - were developed with record speed and used for the first time in India and Egypt in April and May 2005. Unprecedented financial support from long-standing and new donors ensured ongoing intensification of eradication activities in Africa and Asia. And the epidemic of 2003-2005 was brought under control in most re-infected countries, with 14 out of 22 again stopping the disease. The feasibility of polio eradication in the near future was reaffirmed by the Advisory Committee on Polio Eradication (ACPE), the independent technical oversight body of the Global Polio Eradication Initiative. Convening in Geneva, Switzerland in October 2005, the group concluded that the progress in stopping virus transmission, together with the introduction of the new mOPVs, had moved the eradication effort into its final phase in all countries but one: Nigeria. The ACPE stated that with sufficient resources, expanded use of mOPVs and high-quality vaccination campaigns, all polio-affected countries except Nigeria could stop this disease in 2006. The ACPE added, however, that stopping polio in Nigeria would require at least an additional 12 months, even if the quality of immunization activities is dramatically improved in five critical states in the north of the country. In the first quarter of 2006, Nigeria has nearly four times as many cases compared to the sameperiodin2005.Fivenorthernstatesnowaccountformorethanhalfofallglobalcases and represent the greatest risk of renewed international spread of wild poliovirus. These states in northern Nigeria form the only area in the world with uncontrolled transmission of poliovirus (where year-to-year incidence of polio continues to rise), at the start of 2006. However, since nationwide immunizations resumed in late 2004, other parts of Nigeria have made progress. The south of the country is again polio-free; and by the end of 2005, only 13 of 37 states continued to report cases. In 2006, the highest priority is to interrupt polio transmission swiftly in all affected countries, and to help the world remain polio-free while special efforts are made in Nigeria to reach all children in the five key northern states. Simultaneously, preparations will continue for the eventual cessation of OPV use in routine immunization, after confirmation that wild poliovirus has been stopped and appropriately contained. At the start of 2006, the global effort to eradicate polio underwent the most significant strategic shift since the global initiative began in 1988, with massive programmatic implications. Strategically guided by the ACPE, , use of mOPVs will be dramatically scaled up. It is expected that nearly one billion doses of mOPV will be administered in 2006, compared to 500 million doses in 2005. At the same time, any country re-infected in 2006 must conduct outbreak response in line with standing recommendations issued by the ACPE. The key to success in implementing this massive strategic shift will be the continued support of the international community, most notably in filling the 2006-2008 funding gap of US$ 485 million. The world now has a historic opportunity to ensure that everyone - present and future generations in all countries - shares equally in the benefits of a polio- free world.


    On cover: logos for World Health Organization, Rotary International, CDC (U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention), UNICEF.

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