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Polio no longer recommended in 54 countries

This month Pulse has removed polio immunisation as a recommendation for 54 countries in line with changes introduced by NaTHNaC and Travax UK.

The total number of polio cases is already higher than last year at more than 1,500. Although only four countries (Afghanistan, India, Nigeria, Pakistan) are still classified as endemic, over 100 cases were imported into non-endemic countries thus far in 2008.

Although polio immunisation boosters are now indicated for a much smaller number of countries, in practice continued 10-year boosting in travellers with the combined polio, tetanus and low-dose diphtheria vaccine will maintain herd immunity, and this seems wise until global polio eradication is achieved.

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