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Polio cases hit 205 in Indonesia, two in capital JAKARTA - Health workers have found 205 children infected with polio in Indonesia since the disease resurfaced this year, and two of the cases are in the densely populated capital Jakarta, officials said on Monday. Polio, a water-borne disease that can cause irreversible paralysis in hours, reemerged in May in the world's fourth most populous country, which had been polio-free since 1995.

Two rounds of immunisation were carried out in May and June, targeting six million children under the age of five in West Java, Banten and Jakarta provinces. The first round exceeded the target but the second missed thousands of children after media reports said some children died after receiving the oral polio drops. Officials insisted the vaccine was not the cause of the deaths, but the resulting fear made many parents unwilling to allow immunisation.

"Mothers got worried, so they decided not to bring their children to get immunisation. We missed 700,000 on the second round," said Nyoman Kandun, who heads the health ministry's disease control centre. "We will do our best not to miss them again," he said. The health ministry has decided to launch a nationwide immunisation drive on August 30 which will be followed by another round on September 27. The drive will target 24.3 million children.

A spokesman at the World Health Organization (WHO) office in Jakarta said the newest cases were reported on Friday. "There were 16 new reports and one of them came from Central Jakarta. This is not the first one, as on August 1 we received a report on a case from West Jakarta," said Sari Setiogi. The U.N. health agency has said the polio virus was able to spread due to poor health services in some parts of the country and warned the coming wet season might exacerbate the situation. Indonesia's wet season usually occurs from October to April.

The global battle against polio has faced setbacks in the past two years since Nigeria's northern state of Kano banned immunisation out of fear it could cause sterility or spread HIV/AIDS. Vaccinations resumed after the 10-month ban. But the virus spread across Africa, crossed the Red Sea into Saudi Arabia and Yemen, and reached Indonesia, infecting previously polio-free countries along the way. Indonesian health officials have said the virus may have been carried by a migrant worker or a Muslim Haj pilgrim who visited Saudi Arabia before returning to Indonesia, the world's most populous Muslim nation.


Link to related event Related event:
Polio in Indonesia

Related blog entries (category 'Polio') Related blog entries (category 'Polio'):
29 July 2005 · Indonesia braces for Kawasaki virus
22 July 2005 · Polio toll climbs to 155 in Indonesia
13 July 2005 · Wild virus polio appears in Indonesia
07 July 2005 · 11 new polio cases found in Indonesia
06 July 2005 · Polio outbreak worsens with 11 new cases


Posted in Polio @ 08 August 2005 16:24 CET by Jeroen · 'Blog' RSS feed · permalink





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34 new polio cases in Indonesia for total of 100


The World Health Organization on Tuesday reported 34 new polio cases in Indonesia, bringing the country's known total to 100. One of the new cases was confirmed on Sumatra, which until last week was polio-free.


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Polio vaccination drive largely successful


Indonesia's nationwide drive last week to vaccinate about 24 million young children against a spreading polio outbreak was largely successful though some parents continued to resist, health officials said Monday.


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