Venezuela Records First Case of Polio in 30 Years

Henrietta Strickland
June 14, 2018

Polio has reportedly made a comeback in the crisis-wracked country, Venezuela after almost 30 years, as per the Pan-American Health Organisation.

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.

Polio, which can only be prevented through immunization, has been found again in a Venezuelan child according to the Pan-American Health Organization (PAHO).

Polio, or infantile paralysis, is an infectious disease caused by one of three strands of the Poliovirus that enters the body through the nose or mouth and later develops in the throat and intestines.

The last case of acute poliomyelitis reported in Venezuela dates back to 1989, a former health minister, Jose Felix Oletta, told AFP.

Oletta added that the virus affects those people who live in conditions of malnutrition and are not vaccinated.

He criticized officials in the government of Venezuelan President Nicolas Maduro for waiting more than a month to notify PAHO. Global health regulations require it to do so within 24 hours.

Venezuela, devastated by economic and political crises, also accounted for 85 percent of cases of measles reported across Latin America and the Caribbean over the past year, the PAHO said.

Of 1,685 measles cases reported in the region, 1,427 have been registered in Venezuela, says PAHO in a report released Saturday.

The disease is on the rise in the South American nation and the trend has continued this year where cases have been reported in 17 out of 23 states, and in the capital.

The diagnosis comes as Venezuela, with an estimated population of 31.3 million, experiences political and economic turmoil, resulting in a humanitarian and health care crisis.

Other reports by Click Lancashire

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