What makes polio an emergency?

Rotary Voices

Bruce Aylward addressing Rotarians at the 2012 RI Convention in Bangkok, Thailand. Rotary Images

On the 25th of May, the World Health Assembly declared polio a programmatic emergency for global public health. The Global Poverty Project interviewed Bruce Aylward, assistant director-general at the World Health Organization (WHO)

Why now?

Three things were driving the ministers of health of the world in declaring polio an emergency: first – on a positive note – polio eradication has reached a tipping point. India, the country that was responsible for almost half the world’s cases just two years ago, has now passed an entire year without reporting a case, providing incontrovertible evidence that polio can be eradicated anywhere.

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