WHO reveals 10 countries recently affected by Polio resurgence and what this means for global healthcare
Just when we thought the world to be Polio-free, the disease is back— and seems to be out for revenge.
Recently, reports flooded the doors of the WHO claiming Polio had once again infiltrated the public health system in ten countries around the globe. Two years ago, the disease was thought to be a thing of the past, especially after it was declared eradicated by the World Health Organization in India last year. The WHO, after getting wind of this outbreak, called an international health emergency on Monday in an attempt to contain the paralyzing disease; unfortunately, the disease had already made its way into the Middle East once again, and is recorded uprising in 10 states as of today: Pakistan, Afghanistan, Cameroon, Equatorial Guinea, Syria, Iraq, Ethiopia, Israel, Nigeria and Somalia.
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The WHO convened its emergency committee in Geneva, and announced that Pakistan, Syria and Cameroon had allowed the virus to spread to the extremities of its nation. With this news circulating throughout neighboring countries, the WHO is on high-alert to do whatever it takes to support these fragile nation’s in their attempt to fight back against this crippling illness.
“The consequences of further international spread are particularly acute today given the large number of polio-free but conflict-torn and fragile states which have severely compromised routine immunization services and are at high risk of re-infection,” the World Health Organization said in a statement on its website announcing the emergency.
A revisited emphasis on vaccination, for those children inoculated already and not, will be led by Dr. Bruce Aylward, as he and the WHO lead the crusade against Polio eradication hopefully once and for all. In a recent telephone conference, Dr. Aylward stated that he believes citizens of those countries who travel abroad should be vaccinated before and after the arrive/depart, and should simultaneously carry an international recognized certificate as proof of the preventative vaccination.
“Though the disease primarily strikes children under 6, the committee said there was ‘increasing evidence that adult travelers contributed’ to the recent spread of polio from Pakistan to Afghanistan, from Syria to Iraq, and from Cameroon to Equatorial Guinea during what health officials said was the low season for polio transmission, between January and April,” the New York Times reports, “Ten countries are now affected by the new wild polio virus, Dr. Aylward said, including those six as well as Ethiopia, Israel, Nigeria and Somalia. In Israel, he said, there were no confirmed human cases of the disease, but that a Pakistan strain of the virus had been detected in the country’s sewage.”
In addition to vaccination cards, vaccination campaigns and heightened international attention to the Polio issue, The WHO is taking charge at international airports in order to insist upon the severity of this issue. Saira Afzal Tarar, the Pakistani state minister of health, was quoted saying that Pakistan’s government would announce its strategy to combat the disease after meetings with provincial officials later this week, and that they fully support the WHO’s vaccination efforts. As Pakistan gears up to help fight this epidemic, the WHO and public health officials everywhere hope other affected nations take to this example and crush this re-circulating disease before it has a chance to spread further.
Dubai's new smart neuro spinal hospital: need to know
We take a look at Dubai's new smart hospital.
What: The Neuro Spinal Hospital and Radiosurgery Centre is a new hospital featuring state-of-the-art technology for spinal, neurosurgical, neurological, orthopaedic, radiosurgery and cancer treatments. The 700 million AED hospital, (equivalent to £138 million), has 114 beds, smart patient rooms, and green spaces for patient rehabilitation, and is four times the capacity of its former premises in Jumeirah. It is also the UAE’s first hospital to have surgical robots.
Where: The hospital is located in the Dubai Science Park. Founded in 2005, Dubai Science Park is home to more than 350 companies from multinational corporations in life sciences, biotechnology and research; over 4,000 people work here each day.
Who: The UAE's Neuro Spinal Hospital and Radiosurgery Centre was first established in Jumeirah in 2002 by Dr. Abdul Karim Msaddi, as the first as the first "super-specialty" neuroscience hospital.
Why: With advanced diagnosis and robotics, the hospital will provide care across neuroscience, spine, orthopaedics and oncology for people residing in the UAE, as well as international patients.
Prof. Abdul Karim Msaddi, Chairman and Medical Director of the hospital, said: “We are proud to bring world-class healthcare services to Dubai and believe our next-generation hospital will be a game-changer for the emirate’s and the region’s medical industry.
"It will not only significantly increase the availability of specialist neuroscience and radiosurgery treatments and provide better patient care but help attract and develop local and international talent. Investing in the new centre represents our continued faith in the resilience of the region’s economy, as well as a testament to our ongoing drive towards healthcare innovation in the UAE.”