the VOA Special English Development Report.
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World Health Organization has begun to use a new vaccine against polio. Officials
say it will become a major tool in the campaign to end a disease that mainly
affects children under age five.
formulation is known as B.O.P.V. , or bivalent oral polio vaccine. It was used
for the first time in December in a polio immunization campaign in Afghanistan.
Pandak is with the PolioPlus program of the service organization Rotary
International. She explains that health workers have been using what are called
trivalent vaccines in some places. These are areas like Afghanistan where more
than one kind of polio virus exists.
are three types of polio virus. The trivalent vaccine is least effective
against type three, more effective against type one and highly effective
against type two. As a result, few new cases of type two have been reported since
led to greater use of monovalent vaccines to protect against either type one or
type three polio. But Carol Pandak says the monovalent vaccine is not enough in
areas with both.
PANDAK: "You address the type one, and the type three cases go up. You
address the type three, and the type one cases go up."
Curtis at the World Health Organization in Geneva says the new bivalent vaccine
solves this problem.
CURTIS: "The beauty of the bivalent vaccine is that it is able to attack
both types of wild polio virus in one dose."
Pandak says tests found the new vaccine to be thirty percent more effective
than the trivalent vaccine.
than thirty new cases of polio were reported in Afghanistan last year. About
half were type one and the others type three. Rod Curtis says that shows the
importance of the new vaccine targeting both viruses at once. Officials say
similar vaccination campaigns are planned this year in India, Nigeria and
vaccination campaigns have reduced the number of new polio cases reported
worldwide to fewer than two thousand a year. The Global Polio Eradication
Initiative says the number has fallen by ninety-nine percent since nineteen
highly infectious. One victim in two hundred suffers permanent paralysis,
usually in the legs. Five to ten percent of those victims die when their breathing
that's the VOA
Special English Development Report, written by June Simms. I'm Steve Ember.