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Polio in Ethiopia (Somali Province)

01 Aug 2019

An outbreak of polio has been detected in Somali province, Ethiopia.  The virus was found in a patient who became paralysed on 20 May 2019 and from a healthy contact of the patient. Genetic sequencing confirms that the virus is linked to one of the ongoing polio outbreak in Somalia.

Ethiopia already recognises circulating polio in the Horn of Africa as a regional public health emergency and has been participating in regional outbreak response activities with the governments of Somalia and Kenya.

Advice for Travellers

The World Health Organisation recommendsthat "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."

Travellers to polio-affected areas should consider a booster of poliomyelitis vaccine if it has been more than 10 years since most recent vaccination.

For further information see Poliomyelitis.