Polio Public Health Emergency of International Concern (PHEIC)

Emergencies

POLIO
Public Health Emergency of International Concern (PHEIC)

Polio this week as of 17 August 2021
:: The Global Polio Eradication Initiative (GPEI) is closely monitoring developments in Afghanistan. GPEI partners and staff are currently assessing immediate disruptions to polio eradication efforts and the delivery of other essential health services, to ensure continuity of surveillance and immunization activities while prioritizing the safety and security of staff and frontline health workers in the country. Read more

Summary of new WPV and cVDPV viruses this week (AFP cases and ES positives):
:: Pakistan: One WPV1 positive environmental sample
:: Madagascar: One cVDPV2 positive environmental sample
:: Nigeria: 26 cVDPV2 cases

 

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Statement of the Twenty-Ninth Polio IHR Emergency Committee
20 August 2021
The twenty-ninth meeting of the Emergency Committee under the International Health Regulations (2005) (IHR) on the international spread of poliovirus was convened by the WHO Director-General on 4 August 2021 with committee members and advisers attending via video conference, supported by the WHO Secretariat.  The Emergency Committee reviewed the data on wild poliovirus (WPV1) and circulating vaccine derived polioviruses (cVDPV).  The following IHR States Parties provided an update at the video conference on the current situation in their respective countries: Afghanistan, China, Democratic Republic of the Congo, Egypt, Madagascar, Nigeria, Pakistan and Uganda.,,

Conclusion
Although heartened by the apparent progress, the Committee unanimously agreed that the risk of international spread of poliovirus remains a Public Health Emergency of International Concern (PHEIC) and recommended the extension of Temporary Recommendations for a further three months.  The Committee recognizes the concerns regarding the lengthy duration of the polio PHEIC, but concludes that the current situation remains risky, with clear ongoing risk of international spread and ongoing need for coordinated international responses. The Committee also recognised that the ongoing COVID-19 pandemic may have an adverse impact on polio surveillance and on immunisation activities, as will the gradual withdrawal of polio funds from some of the affected countries…

… Additional considerations
The Committee welcomed the substantial progress that has been made but warned that the situation in Afghanistan risked a rapid reversal of progress.  The Committee urged the polio programme to continue to discuss with all parties involved to ensure every missed child in inaccessible areas be quickly brought up to date with vaccines to avoid a sudden surge in cases, particularly as the high season commences. The Committee also urged donors and partners to continue their support, noting the beneficial use of polio assets during the pandemic and that a critical juncture had been reached:  decreasing funding by governments, partly as a result of the pandemic, risked all the hard won gains being lost.

The Committee also welcomed the roll-out of novel OPV2 but was concerned to hear of delays in outbreak response, in some cases as countries preferred to wait for novel OPV2.  Polio outbreaks should continue to be met with a suitable sense of urgency, and response time generally needed to be reduced.  The Committee requested the polio programme to continue to assist countries to mount an emergency response with whichever vaccine formulation was available.
The Committee also warned of the ongoing effects of COVID-19, particularly on routine immunization, and possible future disruptions of supply and delivery of vaccines.  COVID-19 is likely to continue to have negative effects on all health programs and systems for some time to come, so the polio programme must continue to adjust its response on an ongoing basis to get over the remaining hurdles.

Based on the current situation regarding WPV1 and cVDPV, and the reports provided by affected countries, the Director-General accepted the Committee’s assessment and on 10 August 2021 determined that the situation relating to poliovirus continues to constitute a PHEIC, with respect to WPV1 and cVDPV.  The Director-General endorsed the Committee’s recommendations for countries meeting the definition for ‘States infected with WPV1, cVDPV1 or cVDPV3 with potential risk for international spread’, ‘States infected with cVDPV2 with potential risk for international spread’ and for ‘States no longer infected by WPV1 or cVDPV, but which remain vulnerable to re-infection by WPV or cVDPV’ and extended the Temporary Recommendations under the IHR to reduce the risk of the international spread of poliovirus, effective 10 August 2021.

 

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WHO/OCHA Emergencies

 

Editor’s Note:
WHO has apparently reorganized and fundamentally shifted how it judges and tracks “emergencies”. We found no announcement of descriptive information to share and present the webpage structure as encountered below. Obviously, the dates associated with some of these emergencies suggest that this is an archival platform as well as a current emergencies resource.

Health emergencies list – WHO
“The health emergencies list details the disease outbreaks, disasters and humanitarian crises where WHO plays an essential role in supporting countries to respond to and recover from emergencies with public health consequences.”

Crisis in Tigray, Ethiopia [Last apparent update: 5 Aug 2021]

 

Ebola outbreak, Democratic Republic of the Congo, 2021
:: 17 August 2021 News release Cote d’Ivoire starts Ebola vaccination of frontline workers

Ebola outbreak outbreak, N’Zerekore, Guinea, 2021
:: 17 August 2021 News release Cote d’Ivoire starts Ebola vaccination of frontline workers

Coronavirus disease (COVID-19) pandemic [See COVID above]

 

Ebola outbreak, Equateur Province, Democratic Republic of the Congo, 2020
:: 17 August 2021 News release Cote d’Ivoire starts Ebola vaccination of frontline workers

Ebola outbreak, North Kivu, Ituri, Democratic Republic of the Congo, 2018 – 2020
:: 17 August 2021 News release Cote d’Ivoire starts Ebola vaccination of frontline workers

Ebola outbreak, Democratic Republic of the Congo, 2018 [Last apparent update: 24 July 2018]

Yemen crisis [Last apparent update: 12 February 2021]

Syria crisis [Last apparent update: 18 June 2021]

Somalia crisis [Last apparent update: 24 March 2018]

Nigeria crisis [Last apparent update: 9 May 2018]

Ebola outbreak, Democratic Republic of the Congo, 2017 [Last apparent update: 3 May 2021]
:: 17 August 2021 News release Cote d’Ivoire starts Ebola vaccination of frontline workers

Zika virus disease outbreak, 2015-2016 [Last apparent update: 24 Jan 2020]

 

Ebola outbreak: West Africa, 2014-2016
:: 17 August 2021 News release Cote d’Ivoire starts Ebola vaccination of frontline workers

Iraq crisis [Last apparent update: 9 Jan 2008]

South Sudan crisis [Last apparent update: 23 Sep 2020]

Avian influenza A (H7N9) virus outbreak [Last apparent update: 21 May 2021]

Middle East respiratory syndrome (MERS-CoV) outbreak [Last apparent update: 8 July 2019]

Influenza A (H1N1) virus, 2009-2010 pandemic [Last apparent update: 10 Aug 2010]

 

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UN OCHA – Current Emergencies
Current Corporate Emergencies
Northern Ethiopia
Ethiopia Humanitarian Bulletin Issue #11 2 – 16 August 2021

 

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