Africa reaches important milestone in polio eradication

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Survivors of polio in Kano State, Nigeria, sit on tricycles specially designed for people with disabilities. Photo: UNICEF/Sebastian Rich

Africa has reached an important milestone in becoming polio-free, according to the World Health Organization (WHO).

This week marks one year since the last wild polio case was detected on the entire African continent, a sign of important progress in eradicating the deadly disease.

Maria Carlino reports.

In the Horn of Africa, no wild polio cases have been reported since the last case in central Somalia on 11 August 2014, according to WHO.

The agency said that in Nigeria, the last African country where polio has been widespread, a case was last reported on 24 July.

WHO said that if no new cases are confirmed in Nigeria in the next few weeks, and none throughout Africa in the next two years, the continent could be certified polio-free by the Africa Regional Certification Commission.

That would leave only two countries, Pakistan and Afghanistan, where polio transmission has never been interrupted.

Maria Carlino, United Nations.

Duration: 38″

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