Coming off the lowest case count in history in 2017, we begin the new year with the momentum to make polio eradication a reality.
On the global stage this month, polio transition was a key agenda item under discussion at the WHO Executive Board meeting in Geneva.
Circulating vaccine derived poliovirus type 2 cases 2018

Democratic Republic of the Congo: 0 (0)

Syria: 0 (0)

*Data as of 26 January 2018, compared to the same point in 2017.
High-Risk Mobile Populations
The Pakistan polio programme is focused on reaching a critical group of high-risk, mobile children with polio vaccines. Protecting these children—many of whom live in nomadic, displaced or refugee communities, and are often beyond the reach of traditional health systems—is key to ending the spread of the virus. This is true not only in Pakistan, but also across the border in Afghanistan where these communities sometimes travel. 
A Day in the Life of a Female Vaccinator
What would it be like to walk in the shoes of a female polio worker? Through a series of photos, follow Zainab, a vaccinator working in Afghanistan, who is on the frontlines of the country’s efforts to stop polio.  Striving to reach every last child, Zainab and her team embody the dedication shown by polio workers worldwide.  
Afghanistan Increases Efforts to Track Polio
Recent expansion of environmental surveillance is helping Afghanistan’s polio programme corner the virus. The country’s 20th environmental sampling site opened at the end of 2017, and will enable polio workers to better detect the virus in sewage samples. As most infected children don’t show symptoms, tracking polio in the environment is essential for implementing proactive immunization drives in vulnerable areas and ending the spread of the virus for good.
From polio patient to polio expert

Hear Dr Urs Herzog describe how contracting polio as a child inspired his lifelong effort to eradicate the disease in this edition of Coffee with Polio Experts. 
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Executive Board discusses a polio-free world

Both methods to keep the world polio free and how to use the polio infrastructure after eradication were discussed by partners and member states in Geneva.
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Vaccinators continue to tackle vaccine-derived polio in Syria 

350 000 children since the start of the cVDPV2 outbreak in 2017. Stay up to date on their most recent progress.
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TIME: Meet the Doctor Who Runs India's Last Polio Ward

Devex: Opinion: 5 agenda items to watch at WHO's annual board meeting

Cause & Effect: Fighting polio with financial engineering

The National Philanthropic Trust (NPT) released US$  44 million to cover budget gaps for supplementary immunization activities in the first half of 2018. The NPT provides funding received from High Net Worth Individuals.
As part of its Can$ 100 pledge announced at the June 2017 Pledging Moment at the Rotary Convention, Canada concluded funding agreements  with WHO and UNICEF for a total of Can$ 30 million to support Afghanistan over 2018-2020.  
As part of its extraordinary commitment to the global effort to eradicate polio, Germany disbursed €29.9 million to GPEI to support activities in Nigeria, €10 million to Afghanistan and €9 595 000 to Pakistan
The Pakistan Assistance Program of the United Arab Emirates continued its critical support of immunization activities, providing US$ 10.57 million to WHO.
The Bill & Melinda Gates Foundation provided US$ 8.56 million to WHO for Pakistan to support strengthening campaign performance.
The United Nations Foundation continued its long-term support of the GPEI’s resource mobilization and advocacy efforts, providing US$ 810 000 for the period 2018-2019.
South Korea released US$ 500 000 to WHO for outbreak response activities in 2018, fully monetizing its US$ 4 million pledge.
Japan’s Ministry of Health, Labor and Welfare provided US$ 100 000 to WHO to support polio research.

Zarifa, 4, gets her finger marked after receiving oral polio vaccination. Finger marking helps campaigns monitor to double check that every child has been vaccinated. Kandahar City, 19 December 2017. [Read More