Malawi Confirms Polio Case, Govt Declares Health Emergency


Malawi government has declared Public Health Emergency in Malawi following a confirmation of one Poliomyelitis case which has paralyzed a 3 year old girl in Lilongwe thirty years after the country was devastated with the same.

Ministry of Health has therefore declared an outbreak of wild poliovirus type 1 after a case was detected in Lilongwe.

A laboratory test found the strain to be the same as one circulating in Pakistan.

Afghanistan and Pakistan are the only two countries where wild polio is endemic.

The last known case of wild polio in Africa occurred in 2016 in Borno state, Nigeria.

Polio is an infectious disease and can be passed from one person to another through ingestion of food or water which is contaminated with the polio virus.

The virus causes irreversible paralysis disease mainly in children zero to 15 years of age.

It also has a potential to infect immunocompromised adults.

Normally a child would present to a health facility with acute onset of limb weakness which progresses to paralysis.

Minister of Health Khumbize Kandodo Chiponda has said in a statement that her ministry, with support from partners, has put in place strategies for elimination of the disease in the country.

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Flora Mitumba


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