Health Ministry: Oral polio vaccine seems to have begun killing wild virus

Ministry underlines that all unvaccinated children up to ten years must still get drops.

Vaccination against polio (photo credit: Reuters)
Vaccination against polio
(photo credit: Reuters)
As the High Holidays brought about a decline in oral polio vaccinations among children up to the age of 10, the Health Ministry said Sunday that it was still urgent to bring in youngsters for their two drops of protection. So far, 840,000 children have been vaccinated, but there are still several hundreds of thousands who still need to receive the drops to wipe out the oral polio virus that is carried by some in the population.
The ministry said there is still evidence of the wild polio virus in sewage treatment plants (the virus is eliminated in human stools), including in Rahat, Beersheba, Shoket, Tel Sheva, Kseifa and Ara’ara, but there is a small decline in their presence.
There are “irregular amounts” of the wild virus in sewage treatment plants in Jaljulya, Ramle, Kiryat Gat and Lod, but tests must be repeated on a regular basis, the ministry said. The virus has disappeared from plants in Jerusalem, Baka al-Gharbiya and Irron, but repeat tests must be conducted.
During the next two weeks until October 10, tipat halav (well-baby) centers will be open longer hours, from 8 a.m. to 8 p.m., to enable parents to bring their children in.