India's Polio Programme Praised By WHO

by Rukmani Krishna on Sep 12 2013 11:51 PM

India was praised by the World Health Organisation (WHO) for its polio eradication programme.
"It has been 30 months and there has not been a single case (of polio)," WHO Director General Margaret Chan said at the inauguration of the WHO regional meet for southeast Asian countries here.

"You have done it," she said, praising Health Minister Ghulam Nabi Azad's efforts in this direction.

On his part, the health minister said: "It is a matter of great satisfaction that we are meeting at a time when we are just four months away from becoming a polio free country."

"The long and worthwhile journey has been made possible due to the strong political will and continuous leadership at the highest levels of government and undivided support of WHO, translating into adequate financial resources, vastly improved coverage, dedicated officers and massive efforts by more than two million volunteers," Azad said.

Though the WHO took India off the list of polio endemic countries in February 2012, it will declare it "polio free" only if no fresh case is reported for the next one year.

India reported the last wild polio virus type 1 case in Howrah, West Bengal, Jan 13, 2011.