Why the Furor about Polio?





Poliomyelitis, vaccine, Poliovirus


ABSTRACT. Poliomyelitis is one of such diseases as measles and dracunculiasis that can be eradicated, because it meets the criteria for eradicable diseases: being infectious, having humans as major host, effective vaccines, or treatment available for their control, and the availability of political and financial support for the eradication efforts. Ghana, with the rest of the world has already come far in the fight against polio, by reducing its incidence drastically (to zero as of now). The disease can only be prevented but not reversible, once infection results in paralysis and leaves victims permanently maimed, almost invariably reducing their quality of life. The recent outbreak (caused by a circulating vaccine-derived virus of the type 2 strain) was a call to pay more attention to the disease in order to realize the global aim of its elimination. All the attention needed by the disease is centered around vaccination, which indeed was the tool used in combating the outbreak that ensued in Ghana.


Centers for Disease Control and Prevention. What is Polio. Available from: http://www.cdc.gov; updated 2021 Sep 28; cited 2021 Nov 1

World Health Organisation. [Internet]. Poliomyelitis (polio). Available from: http://www.who.int; updated 2020; cited 2022 Jan 1

Centres for Disease Control and Prevention. Global Immunisation: Our Progress Against Polio. Available from: http://www.cdc.gov; updated 2021 Mar 28; cited 2021 Dec 20

Ghana Health Service. Vaccine Derived Polio Virus (VDPV) Outbreak in the Chereponi District, North East Region. Ghana Weekly Epidemiological Report. 2019; 33(4)

Roser M, Ochmann S, Behrens H, Ritchie H, Dadonaite B. Eradication of Diseases. Our World in Data. Available from: http://ourworldindata.org/eradication-of-diseases; updated 2014; cited 2022 Jan 20

Dowdle WR. The principles of disease elimination and eradication. WHO Bulletin OMIS. 1998;76 Suppl 2

World Health Organisation. Poliomyelitis. Available from:https://www.who.int/teams/health-product-and-standards/standards; updated 2004 Jan 1; cited 2022 Jan3

World Health Organisation Regional Office for Africa. [Internet]. Three African countries halt polio outbreaks. Available from: https//www.afro.who.int/news/three-african-countries-halt-polio-outbreaks; updated 2019; sited 2022 Jan 20

Odoom JK, Forrest L, Dunn G, Osei-Kwasi M, Obodai E, Arthur-Quarm J, et al. Interruption of Poliovirus Transmission in Ghana: Molecular Epidemiology of Wild-Type 1 Poliovirus Isolated From 1995-2008. J Infect Dis. 2012; 206(7): 1111-20

World Health Organisation. Report of the SAGE Polio Working Group Meeting 7-8 September 2015. Geneva: The Organisation; 2015.




How to Cite

Amo-Tachie, S. (2022). Why the Furor about Polio?. International Journal of Medical Students. https://doi.org/10.5195/ijms.2022.1490



Original Article