World Polio Day is approaching on 24 October, established by Rotary International 30 years ago as part of the Global Polio Eradication Initiative (GPEI) in 1988. To honour this 30 year milestone, Newmarket business, smartAR are supporting this initiative in the hopes of raising awareness and bringing attention to Polio eradication.
The Poliomyelitis virus is a crippling and potentially fatal infectious disease that most commonly affects children under the age of five. There is no cure, but there are safe and effective vaccines. Through immunizatoin, Polio can be prevented, and a vaccine given multiple times almost always protects a child for life.
The strategy to eradicate polio is therefore based on preventing infection by immunizing every child until transmission stops and the world is polio-free. There are just three remaining countries to be declared polio-free, Pakistan, Afghanistan and Nigeria. The downward trend in the number of cases in recent years has been significant, with only 17 reported cases in 2017.
Every year Rotary clubs around the world launch celebrations to highlight the importance of World Polio Day, and to date have raised and invested US$1.9 billion in the campaign.