- OCHA Afghanistan Humanitarian Bulletin Issue 48, 1–31 Jan 2016
- Human Rights Watch: Afghanistan: Events of 2015
- OCHA Badakhshan Earthquake Flash Update No. 1 - 27 Dec 2015
Appeals & Funding
- 2016 Humanitarian Needs Overview
- 2016 Humanitarian Response Plan
- Humanitarian Action for Children 2016
- Common Humanitarian Fund (CHF) in 2015 PDF XLS
There are eleven weeks to go until the globally synchronized switch from the trivalent to bivalent oral polio vaccine, an important milestone in achieving a polio-free world. Read more here.
The WHO Executive Board is meeting this week, reviewing the report on polio eradication.
On 21 January, Syria passed two years without a reported case of polio despite the conflict which has affected the delivery of health services, including childhood vaccinations.
Looking back at 2015, the programme has seen remarkable steps forward towards polio eradication. A wrap-up of the year shows fewer cases in fewer places than ever before. The report on the status of polio eradication to WHO's Executive Board also summarizes the progress on the Polio Endgame Plan, and on Resolution WHA68.3, adopted by the World Health Assembly (WHA) in May 2015. The year to come will need strengthened momentum to build on these gains and deliver a polio-free world.
Looking back at 2015 and ahead at 2016: a wrap-up of the year shows fewer cases in fewer places than ever before. The report on the status of polio eradication to WHO's Executive Board also summarizes the progress on the Polio Endgame Plan, and on Resolution WHA68.3, adopted by the World Health Assembly (WHA) in May 2015.
The report on the September 2015 meeting of the Strategic Advisory Group of Experts on immunization (SAGE) was published this week, confirming that the globally coordinated withdrawal of the type 2 component in oral polio vaccine (OPV), also referred to as the 'tOPV to bOPV switch', should occur in April 2016.
The emergency committee of the International Health Regulations (IHR) has met for the seventh time and assessed that the international spread of polio continues to constitute a Public Health Emergency of International Concern (PHEIC). They also expanded the temporary recommendations to outbreaks of circulating vaccine derived poliovirus, due to the importance of stopping all types of poliovirus as we near the finish line of polio eradication. Learn more about cVDPVs.
In 2015, wild poliovirus transmission is at the lowest levels ever, with fewer cases reported from fewer areas of fewer countries than ever before. In 2015, 56 wild poliovirus cases have been reported from two countries (Pakistan and Afghanistan), compared to 290 cases from nine countries during the same period in 2014.
Three years since no wild poliovirus type 3: the 10th of November is an opportunity to mark three years with no child paralysed by wild poliovirus type 3 (WPV3); a reminder of the role of surveillance in ensuring the world is polio free, and of innovations in driving the programme forward. For more, please click here.
Significant progress has been made to fight the outbreaks of wild poliovirus type 1 that occurred in the Middle East and Somalia in 2013. The outbreak in Somalia was officially declared over after an outbreak assessment team conducted an in depth review in October.
On 20 October, the Strategic Advisory Group of Experts on immunization (SAGE) confirmed that the globally coordinated withdrawal of the type 2 component in oral polio vaccine (OPV) should occur in April 2016, specifically in a window from 17 April to 1 May. Countries should intensify their preparatory efforts to switch from trivalent OPV to bivalent OPV to meet this timeline.
In Lao Democratic People’s Republic a circulating vaccine-derived poliovirus type 1 (cVDPV1) outbreak has been confirmed, with one case, an eight year old boy who had onset of paralysis on 7 September. Outbreaks of cVDPVs can arise in areas of low population immunity, emphasizing the importance of strong vaccination coverage. Learn more about VDPVs.
Afghanistan became the final polio-endemic country to introduce the inactivated polio vaccine on 30 September as part of the biggest globally synchronized vaccine introduction in history.
This week, the Independent Monitoring Board is meeting in London to assess progress towards polio eradication and to make recommendations for the coming months. The report is expected to be published in the next few weeks.
Out of school and into marriage: 39,000 girls forced to marry every day
Girls in 26 countries are more likely to be forced into marriage than to enroll in secondary school, research from CARE has found.
The report, Vows of Poverty, has been released to mark the International Day of the Girl on 11 October and provides a snapshot of the forces that drive girls into marriage and out of school.
The report found:
- Pakistan launched a nationwide polio campaign this week to vaccinate more than 35 million children in 163 districts of the country. Approximately 200,000 polio workers are participating in the polio campaign, during which Vitamin A will also be distributed.
The Global Polio Eradication Initiative (GPEI) leadership agreed at the time of the 2013–2018 Polio Eradication and Endgame Strategic Plan (PEESP) development that the programme would regularly assess progress, reflect on the lessons learned, plan for the risks ahead, and make needed adjustments to the activities and costs of the plan going forward. This midterm review (MTR) was conducted by a team from the GPEI partners under the guidance of the Strategy Committee (SC) from March-May 2015.
A case of vaccine-derived poliovirus type 2 (VDPV2) has been reported with onset of paralysis on 20 July 2015 in Bamako city, Mali. The virus was isolated from a 19-month old boy of Guinean nationality. The closest genetic match to this case is from a case from Kankan, Guinea, with onset of paralysis on 30 August 2014. The genetic changes suggest that the cVDPV2 has been circulating for more than 12 months. Discussions are currently ongoing with national health authorities to plan and implement an urgent outbreak response.
In Ukraine, a circulating vaccine-derived poliovirus type 1 (cVDPV1) outbreak has been confirmed. Two cases have been confirmed, with dates of onset of paralysis of 30 June and 7 July. The genetic similarity between the cases indicates active transmission of cVDPV1. Both are from the Zakarpatskaya oblast, in south-western Ukraine, bordering Romania, Hungary, Slovakia and Poland. Ukraine had been at particular risk of emergence of a cVDPV, due to inadequate vaccination coverage. In 2014, only 50% of children were fully immunized against polio and other vaccine-preventable diseases.
This week, Pakistan will become the second polio-endemic country to introduce the inactivated polio vaccine (IPV) into its routine immunization system. More than half the global birth cohort is now receiving at least one dose of IPV through routine immunization systems as a result of the biggest globally synchronized vaccine introduction in history. Read more on the status of IPV introductions here.