Health agencies in Afghanistan unite to wipe out polio

Tuesday, March 23, 2010

An Afghan health worker administers polio vaccine to a child last week during a vaccination campaign in Kabul. The Public Health Ministry, UNICEF and the World Health Organization organized the three-day program. Afghanistan, Pakistan, Nigeria and India are the only remaining polio-endemic countries in the world.

Thirty-eight new cases of polio were reported last year in Afghanistan, most of them in areas where insurgent threats have made it hard for the vaccine to reach children. Many of these children live in highly mobile communities that often move between the polio-endemic areas of Afghanistan and Pakistan, complicating immunization and tracking efforts.

-- Rachel Saslow

© 2010 The Washington Post Company