World Polio Day was observed on October 24.

The World Polio Day is observed on October 24, 2020 every year. The day is observed in order to make countries to stay focused and vigilant to fight against Polio.


World Polio Day was established by Rotary International. It was established in order to commemorate the birth of Jonas Salk. Jonas Salk was the person who led the first team that developed the vaccine against this disease.

Polio Cases

WHO data shows that the cases of wild poliovirus have decreased by over 99.9% since 1980. This was possible because of vaccination efforts that are made around the world. Further, In the last three decades, the Global Polio Eradication Initiative (GPEI)  has been monitoring the disease situation globally. The GPEI is led by national governments and the WHO. As per the CDC there were more than 440 cases of poliovirus around the world as of October as compared with 378 cases in 2018 and 71 cases in 2019 globally.

Countries with recent Polio outbreaks

The most recent polio outbreaks were recorded in the Philippines, Ghana, Malaysia, China, Cameroon,  Myanmar, Indonesia and Iran in 2019. These cases were mostly vaccine-derived which means, a rare strain of the virus was genetically mutated from the strain in the vaccine. As per the Centre of Disease Control (CDC), Afghanistan and Pakistan are the two countries where there is stronghold of the wild poliovirus. The number of reported wild poliovirus cases in Pakistan has significantly increased in 2020. However, on August 25, the African Region was declaired wild poliovirus free.

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