Polio re-emerges in Venezuela almost 30 years after eradication

Measles which is highly contagious can be prevented with vaccines but it is on the rise in Venezuela- which also reports a polio case

Measles which is highly contagious can be prevented with vaccines but it is on the rise in Venezuela- which also reports a polio case

Pakistan, Afghanistan and Nigeria, are the only other countries that suffer from endemic polio, a childhood virus that can cause paralysis or death.

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Polio has been reported in Venezuela, a crisis-wracked country where the disease had been eradicated decades ago, the Pan-American Health Organization reports.

The Pan American Health Organisation confirms a vaccine derived case of polio has been detected in Venezuela.

Poliomyelitis, known as polio, is a highly infectious viral disease that invades the brain and spinal cord and causes permanent paralysis in a small proportion of patients, according to the World Health Organization.

The organisation said that the child infected with the disease had no history of getting vaccinated for Polio and lives in an impoverished eastern state of Delta Amacuro. The former Venezuelan Minister of Health claims that President Nicolas Maduro's current health officials took over a month to notify PAHO of the polio case, despite an worldwide rule requiring notice within 24 hours.

The last case of acute poliomyelitis reported in Venezuela dates back to 1989, a former health minister, Jose Felix Oletta, told AFP. Worldwide health regulations require it to do so within 24 hours.

Devastated by a serious economic and political crisis, Venezuela also recorded previous year 85% of measles cases in all countries of Latin America and the Caribbean, according to PAHO.

More specifically, "there were eleven countries that reported 1,685 confirmed measles cases across the region", of which 1,427 were in Venezuela, a PAHO report released Saturday found.

Even though the government conducted a vaccination campaign on April 6 to curb 14 disease which includes measles and tuberculosis, the critics say that not a fair amount of vaccines are arriving to meet the demand.

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