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Published On: Sat, Feb 1st, 2014

Syria polio outbreak total now 23 as seven new cases reported

For the first time in over two months, the Syrian Arab Republic has reported new wild poliovirus type 1 (WPV1) cases in the current outbreak in the war-torn country.

According to the Global Polio Eradication Initiative (GPEI), seven new WPV1 cases were reported in the past week. The cases were reported from Aleppo, Deir-Al-Zour, Edleb and Hasakeh governorates, all with onset of paralysis in November and December 2013.

Syria

Image/CIA

This brings the total to 23 cases.

The GPEI says the reporting of new cases is a sign that surveillance for acute flaccid paralysis is improving in the country, as expected in an outbreak. The response continues country-wide and across the entire Middle East region, to reach more than 22 million children under the age of five years with oral polio vaccine (OPV).

In addition to Syria, WPV 1 cases were reported from the endemic countries of Pakistan and Afghanistan. In Pakistan, two new WPV1 cases were reported in the past week, one from Peshawar, Khyber Pakhtunkhwa with onset of paralysis on 31 December 2013 and one from North Waziristan, FATA with onset of paralysis on 4 January 2014. The total number of WPV1 cases for Pakistan in 2013 is now 92. The total number for WPV1 cases for Pakistan in 2014 is now 5.

In Afghanistan, two new wild poliovirus type 1 (WPV1) cases were reported in the past week, bringing the total WPV1 cases for 2013 to 14, and one case reported in 2014 to date, with onset of paralysis on 14 January. The first 2014 case was reported from Alingar, Laghman province, Eastern Region.

This makes six total confirmed WPV 1 cases reported thus far in 2014 (onset of illness).

A WPV 1 case, with onset of paralysis in June 2013, was also reported in Somalia. Health officials say the case was reported late due to a laboratory processing backlog. This brings the total cases reported from Somalia to 190 in 2013 and 213 cases confirmed on the Horn of Africa last year.

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About the Author

- Writer, Co-Founder and Executive Editor of The Global Dispatch. Robert has been covering news in the areas of health, world news and politics for a variety of online news sources. He is also the Editor-in-Chief of the website, Outbreak News Today and hosts the podcast, Outbreak News Interviews on iTunes, Stitcher and Spotify Robert is politically Independent and a born again Christian Follow @bactiman63

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