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22 Jan 2015 description

Ministers of Health from around the world will convene next week at WHO’s Executive Board meeting, to set global public health policies. Among other topics, representatives are expected to review the current polio epidemiology and global preparedness plans for the phased removal of oral polio vaccines. A report has been prepared, to facilitate discussions, available here.

20 Jan 2015 description

Snapshot 14–20 January

Cameroon: 50,000 people are estimated displaced due to the recent increase in Boko Haram (BH) attacks in the northern regions. In the past week, an attack on a military base in Kolofata resulted in 143 BH killed, subsequently, BH kidnapped 80 people from one village – with three killed and 24 later released. The conflict has escalated regionally, with Chad pledging military support in Cameroon’s fight against Boko Haram.

20 Jan 2015 description
report Rotary

The continued fight to eradicate polio gets an additional $34.8 million boost from Rotary in support of immunization activities and research to be carried out by the Global Polio Eradication Initiative. The funds will be used by the World Health Organization (WHO) and UNICEF for polio immunization, surveillance and research activities in ten countries, as well as to provide technical assistance to additional countries in Africa.

15 Jan 2015 description
  • More than 6 months have passed since the most recent case of wild poliovirus in central Africa was detected in Cameroon on the 9 July 2014. This indicates that progress towards stopping the outbreak in this region is being made. However, outbreak response activities must continue and subnational surveillance systems strengthened to ensure the rapid detection of any residual transmission.
13 Jan 2015 description

Nigeria: Violence has escalated significantly in the northeast. Boko Haram killed more than 2,100 people in the first 11 days of the year. Most were killed in an attack on the town of Baga and surrounding settlements in Borno state, on Lake Chad. Up to 20,000 people were displaced. Other attacks took place in Maiduguri, Damaturu, and Potiskum.

06 Jan 2015 description

Snapshot 17 December – 6 January

Nigeria: A series of suspected Boko Haram attacks in Borno and neighbouring states have resulted in more than 80 deaths, 225 kidnapped, hundreds of homes burneds and thousands displaced.

Central African Republic: Nearly 200,000 people need nutrition assistance. Over 36,000 people are trapped in seven enclaves across the country; a group of 474 Fulani who fled to Yaloke months ago and now cannot leave are in particular need.

06 Jan 2015 description

December saw a significant deterioration of the security situation – compared to the previous month – in nine countries or conflict situations in the world, including in South Asia (Pakistan and India), and East Africa (South Sudan and Kenya). There is a risk of increased violence in the coming month in Sudan, where major offensives are anticipated on the heels of a failure in the peace talks; in Sri Lanka, in the context of the 8 January elections; and in Haiti, where the current president could rule by decree unless parliament's mandate, due to expire on 12 January, is extended.

24 Dec 2014 description
  • The year ends with real – and fragile – progress: the longest stretch in history without wild poliovirus in Africa, large outbreaks stopped in the Middle East and the Horn of Africa, a certified polio-free South East Asia and no wild poliovirus type 3 for over 2 years. This will be the last weekly update of 2014.

16 Dec 2014 description

Snapshot 10–16 December

Iraq: 700,000 IDPs, mostly in Dahuk and Anbar governorates, are living in shelters that are not adapted for winter temperatures. 945,000 IDPs are in dire need of kerosene for heating.

Afghanistan: Kabul has been hit by at least 12 suicide attacks since early November, with more attacks also carried out elsewhere, fuelling concerns about the protection of civilians.

09 Dec 2014 description

Snapshot 3–9 December

Philippines: Category 5 Typhoon Hagupit, locally known as Ruby, made landfall on 6 December over the town of Dolores in Eastern Samar province (Eastern Philippines). At least 49 of 81 provinces are potentially at high risk. The typhoon is moving very slowly, potentially subjecting each community in the path of the typhoon to high winds and torrential rainfall for much longer. 1.1 million people are affected.

04 Dec 2014 description
  • In the north of Madagascar, supplementary immunization activities are planned for December in response to the outbreak of circulating vaccine derived poliovirus. National Immunization Days are planned for January. The aim is to boost immunity across the country against all strains of poliovirus using trivalent oral polio vaccine.

  • For the first time ever, only 1 case of wild poliovirus has been reported in Africa in the last 4 months. The case had onset of paralysis on 11 August in Somalia.

02 Dec 2014 description

Niger: 10,000 refugees arrived in Diffa region from Damasack, Nigeria. Most were fleeing forced recruitment by Boko Haram, and some unaccompanied children were reported. More than 105,000 people have arrived from Nigeria since May 2013, and the rate is increasing. The newly displaced are in a critical situation, and Diffa faces serious gaps in service provision.

26 Nov 2014 description
  • In response to the outbreak of circulating vaccine-derived poliovirus (cVDPV) in South Sudan, over 19,000 children were vaccinated last week in Bentiu Poc, where the two cases were reported. Outbreak response plans are in place to hold three rounds of supplementary immunization activities (SIAs) in high risk areas to stop transmission of the virus.

25 Nov 2014 description

Pakistan: Drought conditions in Sindh have affected nearly 1.7 million people; nearly 500 have died in Tharparkar, including 296 children. In FATA, the number of people displaced by the military’s operation Khyber One in the Tirah Valley has grown to 440,000 people, adding to 993,000 displaced by operations in North Waziristan.

Liberia: Two million children are thought to be affected by the consequences of the Ebola epidemic. High levels of unemployment are affecting income: 70% of households in a recent survey said they do not have enough money to afford food.

20 Nov 2014 description
  • On 13 November, the Director-General of WHO accepted the recommendation of an International Health Regulations (IHR) Emergency Committee of Experts on polio that the international spread of polio continues to constitute a Public Health Emergency of International Concern (PHEIC) under the IHR, and extended the existing Temporary Recommendations to prevent the international spread of polio for countries affected by the disease for another 3 months.

18 Nov 2014 description

Snapshot 12–18 November

Ethiopia: Waters have begun to recede from Leitchuor refugee camp in Gambella, but few refugees have returned to the camps so far, where alarming rates of severe malnutrition persist: 5.7% in Leitchuor, 7.8% in Kule, and 10% in Tierkidi. In SNNPR, flooding was reported, while in Oromia, water trucking has begun for populations affected by drought.

15 Nov 2014 description

The third meeting of the Emergency Committee under the IHR (2005) regarding the international spread of wild poliovirus in 2014 was convened by the Director-General through electronic correspondence from 2 through 7 November 2014.1 The following IHR States Parties submitted an update on the implementation of the Temporary Recommendations since the Committee last met on 31 July 2014: Cameroon, Equatorial Guinea, Pakistan and the Syrian Arab Republic.

13 Nov 2014 description
  • In Madagascar, a circulating vaccine-derived poliovirus type 1 (cVDPV1) has been confirmed. The virus was isolated from one case of acute flaccid paralysis (AFP) with onset of paralysis on 29 September, and from three healthy contacts. An estimated more than 25% of children remain under-immunized against polio in the country. Madagascar was previously affected by a cVDPV2 outbreak in 2001/2002 (resulting in five cases) and in 2005 (resulting in three cases). Emergency outbreak response is being finalized, with campaigns to be held in December and January.

11 Nov 2014 description

Two new cases of circulating vaccine derived polio virus (cVDPV) have been reported in South Sudan, constituting an outbreak. Immunization activities are planned in November and December in order to stop the spread of cVDPV.

Immunization campaigns in Iraq in September reached 88% of children under 5. Around 20 million children were vaccinated across the Middle East in October. These activities are helping to protect the gains made against the virus in the region, with no case reported for nearly 7 months.