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New York polio linked to potential community spread

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August 5, 2022 – New York state health officials more urgent call Unvaccinated children and adults get vaccinated on Thursday poliocites new evidence of “potential community spread” of the debilitating virus.

The poliovirus has now been found in seven wastewater samples in Rockland and Orange counties, side by side north of New York City.

One person has so far tested positive for polio. paralysis due to virus.

“Based on the previous polio New Yorkers should know that for every observed case of paralytic polio, hundreds of people may be infected,” said Mary Bassett, M.D., state health commissioner. said in a statement.

“Combined with the latest wastewater findings, the agency is treating the single case of polio as just the tip of the iceberg with the potential for a much larger spread,” she said. It’s clear what we know when we learn that the polio danger exists in New York today.”

The Rockland County polio patient is the first person known to have contracted the poliovirus in the United States in about a decade. to the Associated Press.

Since the discovery of poliovirus in Rockland County wastewater samples in early June, the virus has also been found in two Orange County wastewater samples in June and July, as well as a Rockland County July sample. increase.

CDC detected 3 positive samples in Rockland County and 4 positive samples in Orange County. All of these are genetically linked to a case of polio in a Rockland County resident who suffered from paralysis.

“These findings provide further evidence that the poliovirus can be transmitted locally, rather than internationally, causing paralysis and spreading to communities,” the release said.

But the latest environmental findings do not mean that residents of Rockland County were the source of the infection, state health officials said. We are working with to determine the origin of the virus.

On Monday, New York health officials said: in another announcement The Global Polio Research Institute Network, which includes CDC and the World Health Organization, has confirmed that the Rockland County case is genetically related to the Greater Jerusalem sample and the London environmental sample.

On Thursday, state health officials called out to unvaccinated New Yorkers, including children over the age of two months, pregnant women, and those who have not yet fully recovered from polio. vaccination Previous Series – Get shot straight away. According to health officials, people living, working, attending school, or living, working, attending school, or visiting Rockland County, Orange County, and the University of New York Unvaccinated people visiting metropolitan areas are currently at the highest risk of exposure, they said.

Under New York’s health guidelines for school-age children, most children are already vaccinated, the warning said. You must be vaccinated or receive a booster.

As of August 1, Rockland County polio vaccination coverage is approximately 60%, and Orange County polio vaccination coverage is approximately 59%, with a statewide average of 79%. their second birthday.

“We must stop the unprecedented spread of polio in our communities from a devastating disease that was eradicated from the United States in 1979,” Rockland County Health Commissioner Patricia Schnabel Rupert said in a statement. must be

“Unvaccinated children and adults should get their first polio shot right away,” she said. I am here at

Her department provides polio vaccines at immunization clinics by appointment or at specific times.Residents can visit departments Polio information page Find out more and make a reservation.

Polio is a highly contagious and life-threatening disease. The virus can spread from person to person, and you can pass it on to others without being sick. Health officials in New York have expressed “strong concern” about the spread of the disease by asymptomatic people after a polio case that caused paralysis.

It can take up to 30 days for mild, flu-like polio symptoms to appear. During that time, an infected person can spread the virus to others.Some polio cases can lead to paralysis or death, and about 5% to 10% of paralysis cases result in death due to disability breathing muscle.

There is no cure for polio, but health officials say it can be prevented with vaccination. CDC guidelines require that every child receive her four polio vaccinations. The first from 6 weeks of age when she is 2 months old, the second from 4 months of age, the third from 6 months to 18 months of age and the last when she is 4 years of age. and 6.

Adults who have not been vaccinated or are unsure whether they have been vaccinated should receive three doses. A person who received 1 or 2 doses should receive her remaining 1 or 2 doses regardless of how long it has been since the previous dose.

Adults who are at high risk of exposure to the poliovirus and who have previously received a series of routine polio vaccines can receive one lifetime booster.

In Orange County, poliovirus-identifying wastewater samples were first collected from the city’s wastewater treatment facility for COVID-19 testing.

“It is concerning that polio, a disease that has been largely eradicated by vaccination, is now rampant in our communities. Given the low vaccination rates,” the county health commissioner said in a statement.

“I encourage all Orange County residents who have not been vaccinated to get vaccinated as soon as medically possible,” she said.

Sources

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2/ https://www.webmd.com/a-to-z-guides/news/20220805/polio-new-york-potential-community-spread

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