THE discovery of polio virus in wastewater in the United States and United Kingdom has raised fears that low vaccination rates may undo years of work to eliminate the infectious disease.
The traces found in the US and UK and one confirmed death are alarming, according to Polio Network Victoria’s deputy chair Fran Henke.
Henke, of Hastings, said the health community had worked tirelessly to eliminate polio from the world but “it appears those who have rejected or failed to access vaccination against the virus for their children, are threatening [those] years of work.”
“Those of us left with the debilitating effects of polio before vaccines were available, do not wish any child or individual to go through late effects,” she said.
“Survivors have been left disabled and discriminated against, especially with the emergence of the misunderstood post-polio syndrome. Some symptoms, oddly enough, are similar to those of long COVID.”
Henke said members of the Mornington Peninsula Post Polio Support Group would attend this year’s Polio Day, the 35th and first for two years.
“The theme of Polio Day this month, is Navigating the System to assist those struggling to access NDIS and aged care packages.
“Most of us met in various hospitals and institutions as children, so this event is like a long lost family gathering.
“None of us wish to see one person subjected to the effects of polio that we have borne and strongly urge vaccination for all.”
Details about vaccination and polio are available from GPs and state health departments as well as at: email@example.com or call 0407 227 055.
Polio Day is 26 October at Malvern Valley Golf Course. Bookings: trybooking.com/events/landing/932456.
Polio details: firstname.lastname@example.org or call 0407 227 055.