Today is World Polio Day where people across the globe come together to advocate on the eradication of polio and speak of the successes we’ve made and plan for the future. We have never been so close to eradicating a disease before and have only eradicating two diseases in the history of mankind. We are at a pivotal moment in time and we are within reach of wiping this terrible, debilitating disease off the face of this planet.
Per the World Health Organization’s article “10 Facts about Polio Eradication” here is where we stand today in our fight against polio:
- Polio may not be something we think still happens but it does. The disease still exists in some places and mainly affects children under five leading to paralysis and in 5-10% of the cases, death.
- We have made significant progress towards the eradication of polio and are 99% of the way to eradicating it globally (In 1988, there were still 350,000 cases/year and in 2012 we were down to 223 cases).
- Only three countries remain for polio to be eradicated: Afghanistan, Nigeria and Pakistan.
- Polio can be eradicated unlike other diseases that cannot.
- Cheap and highly effective vaccines are available to eradicate poverty off the face of the earth.
- Every child must be vaccinated to help eradicate polio.
Now it is time to finish the job. Ask you representatives to support the end of polio, follow along as an armchair advocate today on Twitter at hashtag #endpolio, join Shot@Life and End Polio to help support the cause. Together we can make a difference and change the world.