‘Quiet’ outbreak of polio in New York prompts CDC to consider additional vaccinations for some



CNN

A polio case identified in New York last month is “the very, very tip of the iceberg” and “there must be several hundred cases circulating in the community,” said a senior official at the US Centers for Disease Control and Prevention. CNN on Wednesday.

The case was found in Rockland County, which has the lowest polio vaccination rate. Director of the CDC’s National Center for Immunization and Respiratory Diseases, Dr. Jose Romero noted that the majority of people infected with polio do not have symptoms, so the virus can be transmitted without knowing it.

“A large number of people in the community are infected with the polio virus. They are shedding the virus,” he said. “Diffusion is always possible because diffusion is silent.”

A CDC disease investigation team traveled from agency headquarters in Atlanta to Rockland County last week and said they were “extremely alarmed” that polio “could mushroom out of control very quickly and have a crisis on our hands,” according to a public health agency. The leader met the team.

“What are they—against cautious faith?” Another community leader who specializes in vaccine education said she met with the CDC team in Rockland County. Both leaders requested anonymity because they were not authorized to speak publicly.

Polio can cause incurable paralysis and death, but most people in the U.S. are protected, thanks to vaccination. However, others can become infected with the virus for various reasons.

The unvaccinated and undervaccinated are vulnerable, and Rockland County and Orange County north of New York City have polio vaccination rates of about 60%In comparison 93% Nationwide, under 2 years of age. Immune-compromised People can become infected even if they are fully vaccinated.

Romero said the CDC is considering different options to protect people from polio, including providing additional vaccination to children in the area, as UK health officials are now doing. Londonor prescribing additional doses for certain groups of adults.

“We are looking into all aspects of how to handle this. At this point, we don’t have a definitive answer,” he said.

The Rockland County polio case is the first to be identified in the United States in nearly a decade.

The virus has also been detected Sewage in Rockland County and neighboring Orange County. The positive samples were genetically linked to the individual case, but no other cases have been reported in the United States.

3 out of 4 polio victims do not symptoms, but they are still capable of spreading the virus to others, according to the CDC. Of the rest, most have symptoms such as a sore throat or headache that can easily be overlooked or confused with other illnesses. A relatively small number become paralysed, with only 1 in 200 affected. Some people with rheumatoid arthritis die of respiratory failure.

In the late 1940s, polio spread disabled person An average of over 35,000 people per year in the United States. A vaccination campaign began in 1955, and cases rapidly declined. Today, a full round of childhood polio vaccines— Four sizes 2 months to 6 years – at least 99% effective, according to the CDC.

But in recent decades, some small groups have not Vaccinated Their children against the virus. One of them is within the ultra-Orthodox Jewish community in New York, including Rockland County.

Rockland County’s mostly religious Jewish community has rallied around efforts to educate “foreigners” who refuse to vaccinate, a community health leader said.

“It’s a silent killer like carbon monoxide, we never know when it’s going to hit us,” he said.

The vaccine educator said the CDC team is eager to learn better ways to communicate with members of this community, who don’t use the Internet and instead get much of their information from the messaging site WhatsApp and community newspapers.

This week, Rockland County and local health care providers distributed a brochure in several languages, including Yiddish, that announced, “Polio is rampant in Rockland County.”

A vaccine educator in Rockland County said in meetings with the CDC team, “We talked about the need for resounding messaging, and a press release wasn’t going to cut it.”

CEO of Bon Secours Charity Health System, Rockland County’s largest health care provider, a member of WMCHealth, Dr. Mary Leahy attended meetings with the CDC and asked them to understand those who did not vaccinate their children against polio. “I go back to my grandparents and great-grandparents who actually lived through the days of polio in the ’40s and ’50s,” he said of the severity of the disease.

Romero understands that.

“I grew up in Mexico. I saw this disease and complications,” he said. “I went to school with kids with braces.”

Many Americans don’t recognize the “devastating” consequences of “lifelong paralysis” from polio, he said.

“I think most Americans have never seen polio. People have lost their fear of the disease, if you will.

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