Public Health Emergencies of International Concern (PHEIC)  [to 29 April 2017]

Public Health Emergency of International Concern (PHEIC)
Polio this week as of 25 April 2017
:: The Strategic Advisory Group of Experts on immunization (SAGE) is meeting this week in Geneva, Switzerland.  The group is expected to review the global polio eradication status and advise on additional measures that should be undertaken to fully implement the Polio Endgame Strategic Plan and secure a lasting polio-free world.

“” The GPEI Secretariat Report to the upcoming World Health Assembly (WHA) has been finalized and is available here [see below].  The report summarises the current status against all four objectives of the Polio Endgame Plan, and will be the main tool to inform discussions by Member States at next month’s WHA.

:: This week marks the World Immunization Week, aimed at raising global awareness of the need to ensure all children are vaccinated against polio and all vaccine-preventable diseases.  The GPEI has launched two animations to help mark this special week, on the Polio Surveillance System and Reaching Every Last Child.

Country Updates [Selected Excerpts]
New cases or environmental samples reported across the monitored country/region settings: Afghanistan, Pakistan, Nigeria, Lake Chad Basin. Guinea and West Africa, and Lao People’s Democratic Republic have been removed from the monitored geographies list.

:: Two new wild poliovirus type 1 (WPV1) environmental positive samples were reported in the past week, from Nangahar and Kandahar, collected on 25 March and 9 March, respectively.

4 April 2017Balochistan (two from Killa Abdullah and one from Quetta), and one from Sindh (Gadap, greater Karachi), collected on 1 April, 17 March, 14 March and 13 March, respectively.



Poliomyelitis: Report by the Secretariat
Seventieth World Health Assembly
Provisional Agenda Item 12.3   A70/14
[Excerpts; Editor’s text bolding]

…5. The declaration in 2014 of international spread of wild poliovirus as a Public Health Emergency of International Concern and the Temporary Recommendations promulgated under the International Health Regulations (2005) remain in effect. National polio emergency action plans continue to be implemented in all countries affected by circulation of either wild poliovirus or vaccine-derived polioviruses, and all countries currently affected by circulation of either type of virus have declared such events to be national public health emergencies.

  1. Between 17 April and 1 May 2016, all 155 countries and territories that were still using trivalent oral polio vaccine successfully switched its use to the bivalent oral polio vaccine through a globally-synchronized replacement. It was the first step in the phased removal of oral polio vaccines, which will culminate with the cessation of use of all oral polio vaccines following global certification of eradication of all wild poliovirus types. Since the declaration of eradication of wild poliovirus type 2 in September 2015, Member States are completing efforts to identify facilities holding type 2 polioviruses (wild, vaccine-derived or Sabin), destroy unneeded materials or appropriately contain needed materials in poliovirus-essential facilities.
  1. In 2016, acceleration of transition planning continued (see paragraphs 20–25) in order: to ensure effective advance human resource planning at all levels of the Secretariat to reduce the number of polio-funded staff and associated financial liabilities; to understand the consequences of the loss of polio-funded staff and infrastructure on other WHO programme areas, and WHO country offices; and to help to identify opportunities to mainstream or integrate polio functions into other programmes areas or national health system, where feasible.
  1. The partners of the Global Polio Eradication Initiative continue to engage closely with all Member States and the broader international development community in efforts to secure rapidly the additional US$ 1300 million required to achieve a lasting polio-free world…


  1. Thanks to the generous continuing support of the international development community, including Member States (especially the countries where poliomyelitis is endemic), multilateral and bilateral organizations, development banks, foundations and Rotary International, the budget for planned activities for 2016 was fully financed. Efforts are under way to mobilize, by mid-2017, the additional US$ 1300 million required to fully fund the implementation of the Polio Eradication and Endgame Strategic Plan and to secure a lasting polio-free world and global certification in 2020. In addition to the significant humanitarian benefits associated with polio eradication, the drive is also associated with substantial economic benefits. A polio-free world will reap savings of a total of more than US$ 50 000 million (with US$ 27 000 million already saved), funds that can be used to address other pressing public health and development needs. Critical to achieving a lasting polio-free world is the rapid mobilization of the additional funds needed. The Global Polio Eradication Initiative published an investment case2 for polio eradication, clearly summarizing the economic and humanitarian rationale for continued investment in the Initiative…
  1. Available at http://polioeradication.org/wpcontent/uploads/2017/03/InvestmentCase.pdf

(accessed 10 April 2017)


WHO Grade 3 Emergencies  [to 29 April 2017]
Iraq  –
:: Iraq: Special health situation report from Mosul
22 April 2017 — WHO has supported the health directorates in Erbil, Duhok and Silymania by providing intravenous fluids sufficient for 100 000 people. The Federal Ministry of Health has opened a fully equipped third hospital in Hamam al’Alil (including a maternity unit by UNFPA) managed by ASPEN Medical. More than 16 800 consultations (25% of them children under 5 years) has been managed through the primary health care facilities and WHO supported mobile clinics.

:: Impending famine, ongoing fighting and a failing health system leave millions at risk in Yemen
24 April 2017 — Two years of intense conflict have left 18.8 million people in need of humanitarian assistance and placed overwhelming strain on the country’s health system at a time when it is needed most.
The World Health Organization (WHO) is leading a reprioritization of the response of more than 66 operational partner organizations, aiming to sustain the remnants of the nation’s health system and ensure access to life-saving health services for the country’s most vulnerable.

NigeriaNo new announcements identified
South Sudan  – No new announcements identified
The Syrian Arab Republic  – No new announcements identified


WHO Grade 2 Emergencies  [to 29 April 2017]
Cameroon  – No new announcements identified.
Central African Republic  – No new announcements identified.
Democratic Republic of the CongoNo new announcements identified.
EthiopiaNo new announcements identified.
LibyaNo new announcements identified.
MyanmarNo new announcements identified.
Niger  – No new announcements identified.
Ukraine  – No new announcements identified.


UN OCHA – L3 Emergencies

The UN and its humanitarian partners are currently responding to three ‘L3’ emergencies. This is the global humanitarian system’s classification for the response to the most severe, large-scale humanitarian crises. 

[New primary webpage not responding at inquiry]


Editor’s Note:
We will cluster these recent emergencies as below and continue to monitor the WHO webpages for updates and key developments.
Zika virus  [to 29 April 2017]
[No new digest content identified]
MERS-CoV [to 29 April 2017]
Disease Outbreak News [DONs]
:: Middle East respiratory syndrome coronavirus (MERS-CoV) – Saudi Arabia and Qatar
27 April 2017
:: Middle East respiratory syndrome coronavirus (MERS-CoV) – United Arab Emirates
24 April 2017


Yellow Fever  [to 29 April 2017]
[No new digest content identified]


EBOLA/EVD  [to 29 April 2017]
[No new digest content identified]