CDC in New York Polio Vaccination Assistance, Investigation – NBC New York

What there is to know

  • New York State Health Commissioner Mary Bassett has warned that the confirmed case of polio in an unvaccinated adult and detection of the virus in sewage could indicate a larger outbreak is underway.
  • “Based on past polio outbreaks, New Yorkers should know that for every case of paralytic polio observed, there may be hundreds more people infected,” Bassett said.
  • State health officials are urgently calling on unvaccinated people to get their shots as soon as possible

A federal team has been deployed to New York to investigate the state’s only positive case of polio – found in an unvaccinated adult in Rockland County who suffered from paralysis.

The CDC confirmed its presence in the Empire State as health officials issued an urgent appeal for unvaccinated people to get vaccinated against the virus, citing new evidence of possible “community spread.”

“The CDC continues to work with the New York State Department of Health to investigate their recent case of polio, including ongoing testing of sewage samples to monitor for poliovirus and the deployment of a small team in New York to assist on the ground with survey and vaccination efforts,” a spokesperson confirmed Sunday.

The polio virus has now been found in seven different sewage samples in two adjacent counties in northern New York, health officials said.

But based on past polio outbreaks, “New Yorkers should know that for every case of paralytic polio observed, there may be hundreds more people infected,” the NIHA health commissioner said Thursday. State, Dr. Mary T. Bassett, in a statement.

“Coupled with the latest sewage findings, the Department is treating the single case of polio as the tip of the iceberg of a much larger potential spread,” she said. “As we learn more, what we know is clear: the danger of polio is present in New York today. We must meet this moment by ensuring that adults, including pregnant women, and young children 2 months old are up to date with their vaccinations – the safe protection against this debilitating virus that every New Yorker needs.

The polio patient in Rockland County is the first known person to be infected with the virus in the United States in nearly a decade. Sewage samples taken in June and July in adjacent Orange County also contained the virus.

Polio, once one of the nation’s most feared diseases, was declared eliminated in the United States in 1979, more than two decades after vaccines became available.

The majority of people infected with poliomyelitis have no symptoms, but can still shed the virus and transmit it to others for days or weeks. A small percentage of people who contract the disease suffer from paralysis. The disease is fatal for 5 to 10% of paralyzed people.

All schoolchildren in New York must get the polio vaccine, but enforcement of vaccination rules in some areas can be lax. Both Rockland and Orange counties are known as centers of vaccine resistance. Statewide, about 79 percent have completed their polio vaccination series by age two. In Orange County, that rate is 59%. In Rockland, it’s 60%.

The Orange County wastewater samples were originally collected from municipal sewage treatment plants for COVID-19 testing.

“It is concerning that polio, a disease that was largely eradicated through vaccination, is now circulating in our community, especially given the low vaccination rates for this debilitating disease in some areas of our county,” the county said. Orange County Health Commissioner Irina Gelman. said. “I urge all unvaccinated residents of Orange County to get vaccinated as soon as medically possible.”

The World Health Organization, WHO, on Saturday declared monkeypox a public health emergency of international concern. The designation puts Monkeypox on the same list as other epidemics such as COVID-19, Zika, H1N1 flu, polio and Ebola

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