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Hot Topics - Diseases and vaccines - Polio/polio vaccine

Hot Topics - Diseases and vaccines - Polio/polio vaccine

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Diseases and vaccines - Polio/polio vaccine

March 1-7, 2004

►March 5, 2004 - Rumours and vaccines - The Globe And Mail - "So much is riding on northern Nigeria's verdict on the polio vaccine that any delay is frustrating. It had been expected that the government and Islamic religious leaders in Nigeria's Kano state would announce this week whether vaccinations against polio would resume. On Wednesday, officials with the United Nations World Health Organization said the state had postponed any decision until March 15."

►March 2, 2004 - Last ditch fight to end polio - Focus turns to post-polio era as eradication leader plans a final assault on the virus - The Scientist via www.biomedcentral.com

Polio vaccines and the origin of AIDS: some key writings - www.uow.edu.au

►March 1, 2004 - Polio Vaccine: Agent of Life Or Death? - analysis - This Day via www.allafrica.com - "Over the last 20 years, the world has witnessed miraculous developments in child survival. First, smallpox was eradicated in 1979. Then during the 1980s, infant mortality fell by more than five per cent each year. This means that in one generation, the number of childhood deaths fell by half - an astounding achievement...But 11 million children are still slipping through the safety net each year that many children die from preventable diseases or malnutrition. Today an estimated 1.2 million children are infected with HIV and 10 per cent of new infections occur in children under the age of five. Imagine the fear that a parent in sub-Saharan Africa lives with every day, knowing that their child has a one in 10 chance of dying before reaching their first birthday, and a one in five chance of not seeing their fifth birthday."

February 23-29, 2004

►February 27, 2004 - Surmounting baseless rumours, many Nigerian states resume polio immunization - UN

►February 26, 2004 - Official Defends Polio Vaccine Boycott - AP via The Herald-Sun 

February 27, 2004 - Polio vaccine: Our boycott is lesser evil, says Gov Shekarau - Vanguard via www.vanguardngr.com - "AS the United Nations wound up the first round of its drive to protect 63 million African children from polio yesterday, Governor Ibrahim Shekarau of Kano State said the decision of the state to boycott the immunisation was a 'lesser evil.'...Kano, Bauchi, Zamfara and Niger boycotted the drive, but Niger and Bauchi yesterday dropped their opposition and said they were re-joining the campaign. Governor Shekarau in an interview in Kano said of the boycott: 'It is a lesser of two evils, to sacrifice two, three, four, five even 10 children (to polio) than allow hundreds or thousands or possibly millions of girl-children likely to be rendered infertile.'...Tests carried out on the vaccines by scientists in the state last year, he said, 'found traces of hormones. We want explanations.'”

►February 26, 2004 - African polio vaccination drive ends without reaching heart of outbreak - AFP via Yahoo!

►February 26, 2004 - Islamic leaders blamed for return of polio - Reuters via The New Zealand Herald

►February 26, 2004 - Official Defends Polio Vaccine Boycott - AP via Ledger-Enquirer

►February 22, 2004 - Nigeria boycotting polio immunizations, calls shots 'U.S. plot to kill off Muslims' - AP via News 24 Houston

►February 22, 2004 - Islamic Nigerian state affirms immunization boycott as polio outbreak spreads - AP via The Houston Chronicle

►February 23, 2004 - Polio boycott backfires on leader - The Telegraph, India

►February 22, 2004 - Finger on polio pulse, other schemes suffer - www.indianexpress.com

►February 23, 2004 - Nigerian Islamic state rejects polio vaccine evidence as outbreak spreads - AP via Billings Gazette

►February 24, 2004 - Nigerian Muslims foil polio campaign - Infertility Feared: Radical clerics' suspicion about the UN drive to eliminate the crippling disease could undo the successes of a 16-year-old global immunization drive - AFP via Taipei Times

►February 23, 2004 - On This Day 1954 - Lasting Prevention of Polio Reported in Vaccine Tests (requires registration or subscription) - Dr. Salk Says Discovery Fights Off All 3 Kinds of Crippling Disease - The New York Times

►February 22, 2004 - Vaccine hurdle - The Telegraph, India - "Buddhadeb Bhattacharjee administered polio drops to three children at Karaya in south Calcutta in the morning and it had a smooth run in the city but about 1,500 children across the state could not be given the drops following boycotts."

►February 22, 2004 - Nigerian Islamic state rejects polio vaccine evidence as outbreak spreads - AP via San Francisco Chronicle

February 16-22, 2004

►February 20, 2004 - Vaccine ban linked to polio revival - AP via St. Petersburg Times - "The World Health Organization will launch a huge immunization campaign Monday targeting 63-million children in 10 African countries as a polio outbreak spreads from Muslim northern Nigeria...Islamic leaders in the region at the heart of the Nigerian outbreak say they will uphold their ban on the polio vaccine, calling it part of a U.S. plot to spread infertility or AIDS among Muslims."

►February 19, 2004 - Nigeria: Muslim suspicion of polio vaccine lingers on - UN Office for the Coordination of Humanitarian Affairs via www.irinnews.org

►February 19, 2004 - Those who obstruct immunisation will be punished - GNA via www.ghanaweb.com

►February 16, 2004 - Nigeria's Polio Situation Frightening--WHO - African News Service via www.immunizationinfo.org (abstract)

February 9-15, 2004

►February 12, 2004 - The Mop-Up: Eradicating Polio From the Planet, One Child at a Time - New Yorker via www.immunizationinfo.org (abstract)

►February 10, 2004 - Muslims Fear Polio Vaccines Are U.S. Conspiracy - www.thebostonchannel.com

►February 3, 2004 - Q: Can polio recur in adult hood? - The Boston Globe

January 26 - February 8, 2004 (2 weeks combined due to illness)

►February 7, 2004 - Nigeria fighting fears that polio vaccine is a plot - The Star Tribune - "With its polio outbreak spreading, Nigeria is sending a team of scientists, officials and Muslim leaders abroad Sunday to bring back proof that the vaccine is neither contaminated nor a Western plot to spread AIDS."

►February 6, 2004 - Team Seeks Reassurance on Polio Vaccine - AP via Newsday - "With its polio outbreak spreading, Nigeria is sending a team of scientists, officials and Muslim leaders abroad Sunday to bring back proof that the vaccine is neither contaminated nor a Western plot to spread AIDS...Three predominantly Muslim northern states have suspended door-to-door vaccinations since October, citing fears that the vaccine could cause infertility or AIDS."

►January 28, 2004 - Nigeria to Test Polio Vaccine to Counter Suspicion - Reuters via Yahoo!

►January 26, 2004 - Central African Republic: Polio Case Detected in Bossembele - IRIN via www.allafrica.com - "A case of "wild" polio has been detected in the Central African Republic (CAR) town of Bossembele, 157 km north of the capital, Bangui, three years after the last reported case in the country, the head of the Pasteur Institute's polio laboratory, Didier Menard, told IRIN on Monday..."The laboratory confirmed on Friday that it was a case of wild polio," Menard said...He said the girl had a doubtful immunisation background and was first suspected on 16 December 2003 of having polio."

►January 26, 2004 - India remains one of last polio outposts - The Times of India

►January 24, 2004 - Polio Vaccine Controversy Rages On - Weekly Trust (Kaduna) via www.allafrica.com

January 19-25, 2004

►January 23, 2004 - Zim anti-polio vaccines dwindle - The Zimbabwe Independent - "STOCKS of anti-polio vaccine BCG have begun to dwindle at a number of government-run medical centres in the country which has forced the government to scout for international bidders to supply the medicine, it emerged this week."

Comment:  The problem is, BCG is the anti-TB vaccine.

►January 16, 2004 - Polio Should Be a Relic, Declare Health Ministers - CDC via www.allafrica.com

January 12-18, 2004

►January 18, 2004 - Nigerian state upholds ban on polio vaccinations - AP via The Times of India - "Officials of a heavily Islamic northern Nigerian state said Saturday they wouldn't lift a ban on polio immunizations, after local tests failed to assuage fundamentalists' fears that the doses contain ingredients to render Muslims infertile."

January 17, 2004 - Fanatics declare war on vaccines - The Daily News - "Northern Nigeria has been swept by a wave of Islamic fundamentalism. Muslim clerics have been urging people not to take the polio vaccine, which they say makes girls sterile...They also allege that the vaccine is contaminated by HIV, all as part of an American-abetted plot to control the population of the Third World and especially the number of Muslims...Much of this is driven by sheer anti-U.S. spite. Several Muslim leaders told a Boston Globe reporter they knew nothing was wrong with the vaccine but were willing to risk crippling children because they hated the United States so."

January 16, 2004 - Are fears over polio vaccine valid? - The World Health Organisation (WHO) is accusing Nigeria of frustrating efforts to eradicate polio. - BBC - "Join the BBC's Africa Live debate Wednesday, 21 January at 1630 & 1830GMT."

January 16, 2004 - 6 Nations to Intensify Polio Vaccinations (requires registration or subscription) - The New York Times - "Health ministers from the six countries where polio is now spreading said yesterday that they would intensify efforts to immunize 250 million children against the crippling disease by the end of this year...If they succeed, they would move up the World Health Organization's goal by one year."

January 16, 2004 - Immunisation drive could wipe out polio by end of 2004 - The Guardian, UK - "Polio, which used to kill and disable many thousands of children every year, could be eradicated by the end of 2004 in one final last ambitious push to immunise 250 million children several times each, the head of the World Health Organisation's campaign said yesterday...'We really do have a one-time opportunity to get it finished,' said Bruce Aylward, its global coordinator. 'The goal is to finish it by the end of 2004, but we may still be mopping up at the beginning of 2005...If we are still dealing with widescale transmission in 2005, the world will have squandered that opportunity.'"

►January 16, 2004 - Polio Eradication Under Gun - Atlanta Journal-Constitution via www.immunizationinfo.org (abstract) - "The World Health Organization (WHO) and the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) say that to eradicate polio entirely from the planet, at least 250 million children in several high-risk areas must be vaccinated at least three times during 2004, lest the 15-year program to eliminate the disease be for nothing."

►January 15, 2004 - Polio Vaccine: the Great Deception - This Day (Lagos) - "Not too long ago, Professor Hussein Akande Abdulkareem of the Lagos State University gave a public to the Nigerian Council of Islamic Scholars lecture which was widely publicized in Nigerian newspapers. In the lecture, a lot of disturbing and misleading issues concerning the polio vaccine and the process of vaccination in general which could jeopardize the global polio vaccination programme in Nigeria were raised. If a Nigerian Biochemist in the 21st century could be claiming that vaccines could not be relied upon to boost the human immune system 205 years after Edward Jenner discovered the concept of vaccine and vaccination, it is rather unfortunate. It portrays the speed with which we are developing backwards."

January 13, 2004 - WHO Renews Effort to Wipe Out Polio  - New Infections Emerge in Previously Polio-Free Countries - NPR - "The World Health Organization hopes to eradicate polio worldwide by next year, using the oral polio vaccine. But last year, health officials started to see a dangerous trend: The disease spread from Nigeria to six other West African countries where polio had been eradicated."

Comment:  How is it that the oral polio vaccine, which is live and can cause polio, is thought to be able to eradicate polio?

►January 14, 2004 - Polio on rise as Nigerian clerics block vaccinations - The Globe and Mail - "The World Health Organization has confirmed new outbreaks of polio in two African countries that were polio-free -- just as the global effort to eradicate the disease was believed to be on the brink of success...New cases have been confirmed in Cameroon and Benin, and both were caused by a strain from Nigeria that is spreading after Muslim leaders in the north of that country blocked vaccination efforts, saying they were part of a U.S. plot to make Muslim women infertile.

►January 12, 2004 - Supreme Court upholds secret detentions - MSNBC - "(The court) Rejected an appeal from St. Louis University in a case involving a polio vaccine. The university was ordered in 1991 to pay $16 million to the family of a baby who contracted polio and was paralyzed after receiving vaccine. The university tried to recover the money from the government and American Cynamid Co., the vaccine maker. The university claimed the vaccine Orimune, which was given to Danny Callahan, violated government regulations. The case is St. Louis University v. American Cynamid Co., 03-557."

►January 12, 2004 - Bangladesh received 30 million doses of Oral Polio Vaccine from Japan - www.matamat.com

Comment:  For a comparison of oral polio vaccine and inactivated polio vaccine, go to Scandals: Wanted: Dead or Alive? Is IPV really safer than OPV?

January 5-11, 2004

►January 11, 2004 - Polio Cases in West Africa May Thwart W.H.O. Plan (requires registration or subscription) - The New York Times - "Polio has spread to two more countries in West Africa, further jeopardizing the World Health Organization's goal of wiping out the crippling disease by next year, an official of the agency said Friday...The health organization has come tantalizingly close to reaching its goal, having reduced the number of new polio cases to the lowest level since it began its program in 1988 to eliminate the disease. The W.H.O. said there were 667 paralytic cases in 2003, about 1 percent of the number in 1988."

►January 8, 2004 - OPINION:The controversy over the polio vaccine - Vanguard Online - "The oral polio vaccine is one of the safest vaccines ever produced."

Comment: Well, maybe that just about says it all.  A polio vaccine that causes polio is "one of the safest vaccines ever produced".  (Which is why it is no longer recommended for use in the United States and many other places.)

►January 12, 2004 - Nigeria blamed for spread of polio - The New York Times via www.theage.com.au - "Polio has spread to two more countries in west Africa, further jeopardising the World Health Organisation's goal of wiping out the crippling disease by 2005...WHO officials are placing the blame squarely on Nigeria, Africa's most populous nation and home to 300 of the new polio cases in last year, nearly half the world total...The chief obstacle is opposition to immunisation by some Islamic leaders in northern Nigeria. They say the vaccine contains hormones that sterilise girls, Dr Heymann, who strongly disputes the contention, said."

►January 9, 2004 - UN Says Polio is Spreading to Countries Where It Had Been Eradicated - United Nations (New York) via www.allafrica.com - "The United Nations World Health Organization (WHO) today confirmed two new cases of poliovirus in Benin and Cameroon - countries where the disease had previously been eradicated...The spread of the virus across borders shows how fragile progress in its eradication is, the agency said, stressing the urgency of stopping transmission."

December 29, 2003 - January 4, 2004

December 30, 2003 - Reps And the Polio Vaccine Controversy - Daily Trust (Abuja) via www.allafrica.com - "The House on August 19, mandated the committee to carry full-blown investigations into the allegations that the vaccine contains anti-fertility agents and causes cancer among others, to allay people's fears and lay the lingering controversy to rest...The current row on the polio vaccine has its roots in assertions made by the chairman of the Supreme Council for Sharia in Nigeria, Dr. Datti Ahmed on July 26 that the vaccine has been contaminated with anti-fertility agents and should therefore not be administered on children until full investigations were conducted."

 

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