Posted on Nov 03, 2021
In the October edition of Rotary magazine, an interview with Aidan O’Leary, Polio Eradication Director for the World Health Organization, was published talking about the current opportunity we have to eradicate polio. 
O’Leary discussed the types of polio still existing in the world today, the cases still being seen, and the publication of Delivering On A Promise: Polio Eradication Strategy 2022-2026.  Below are some of the highlights of the interview:
  • Two types of polio are being tracked currently
    • Wild Polio - the original strain of polio that continues to mutate and has proven the most persistent
    • Circulating Vaccine-Driven Polio Virus (cVDPV) - a live strain of polio that is weaker than the wild strain and circulates in areas with low immunization rates
    • Wild Polio cases have continued to decrease.  In 2020, there were 140 cases worldwide and only two through July 27 of 2021.  
    • cVDPC cases have also dropped from 1,103 in 2020 to 179 through July 27, 2021.  But this drop has followed three consecutive years of this number tripling.
  • One explanation for the current decrease in cases is the lack of mobility, especially in Afghanistan and Pakistan, during the COVID-19 pandemic.
  • Annual immunization goals
    • Pakistan - 40 million children under the age of 5
    • Afghanistan - 9-10 million under the age of 5
  • The newest strategic plan to address polio eradication has been published and can be found at  The five goals are:
    • Political Advocacy
    • Community Engagement
    • Improved Operations
    • Integrate Polio Into Health Programs
    • Improve Surveillance
The message that was made clear throughout the interview was one of optimism - A polio-free world is within reach!
So what can Linn County Rotary do to help in this final push?  We can meet our goal of raising $1,700 this year for Polio Plus.  In order to get us closer to that goal, we as a club are being challenged to raise $350 toward this goal before the next newsletter.  To make it easier, you can use the link or QR Code below to donate right now. That gives us one month.  Let’s make this happen!
Make sure you sign in to your my.rotary account so the donation is associated with the club!