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Polio risk in Lake Chad, Africa, declared by World Health Organization

In July, 3 children in Borno State, Nigeria, were diagnosed with polio. Investigations revealed that the polio virus and the virus originating from the vaccine itself have been circulating in the area for the past 2 years. As a result, the World Health Organization has declared that there is a high risk of international spread of the these virus strains, in particular to neighbouring areas of the Lake Chad sub-region.

Nigeria has declared the outbreak to be a national public health emergency, and neighbouring Cameroon, Central African Republic, Chad and Niger have declared a regional public health emergency for the Lake Chad sub-region.

Advice

Travellers in any country that reports cases of polio can reduce their risk of exposure to polio virus by ensuring that their childhood vaccinations, including polio, are up-to-date prior to travelling.

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