Polio this week in Congo
One case of circulating vaccine-derived poliovirus type 2 (cVDPV2) was reported in Kouilou making it the first in the country. The virus is linked to the Huila outbreak in Angola.
International Health Regulations
Countries affected by poliovirus transmission are subject to International Health Regulations Temporary Recommendations that request them to declare a case of polio as a national public health emergency and consideration vaccination of all international travellers, as per temporary recommendations issued as of October 2020.
It is important that all countries, in particular those with frequent travel and contacts with polio-affected countries and areas, strengthen surveillance for AFP cases in order to rapidly detect any new virus importation and to facilitate a rapid response. Countries, territories and areas should also maintain uniformly high routine immunization coverage at the district level to minimize the consequences of any new virus introduction.
WHO’s International Travel and Health recommends that all travellers to polio-affected areas be fully vaccinated against polio. Residents (and visitors for more than 4 weeks) from infected areas should receive an additional dose of OPV or inactivated polio vaccine (IPV) within 4 weeks to 12 months of travel.
As per the advice of an Emergency Committee convened under the International Health Regulations (2005), efforts to limit the international spread of poliovirus remains a Public Health Emergency of International Concern (PHEIC). Countries affected by poliovirus transmission is subject to Temporary Recommendations. To comply with the Temporary Recommendations issued under the PHEIC, any country infected by poliovirus should declare the outbreak as a national public health emergency and consider vaccination of all international travellers.