International measures to stop spread of wild polio virus

07 January 2020

Article: 54/103

On 11 December 2019, the 23rd meeting of the Emergency Committee under the International Health Regulations (IHR) (2005) regarding the international spread of wild poliovirus was convened by the World Health Organization (WHO) Director-General, Dr Tedros Adhanom Ghebreyesus.

The committee agreed that the situation still constitutes a Public Health Emergency of International Concern (PHEIC) and recommended the extension of the temporary recommendations. The committee provided the director-general with updated risk categories as below:

  • A certificate requirement for polio vaccination under IHR (2005) is required for countries listed below, which are infected with WPV1, cVDPV1 or cVDPV3 with the potential risk of international spread:
    • Afghanistan (WPV1) 
    • Pakistan (WPV1)
    • Nigeria (WPV1) 
    • Indonesia (cVDPV1) 
    • Malaysia (cVDPV1) 
    • Myanmar (cVDPV1) 
    • Philippines (cVDPV1)

  • There is no certificate requirement under IHR (2005) for countries listed below, which are infected with cVDPV2, with potential or demonstrated risk of international spread, with the exception of Nigeria and the Philippines, which are also infected with WPV1 or cVDPV1. However, travellers are encouraged to carry proof of polio vaccination:

    • Angola 
    • Benin 
    • Cameroon 
    • Central African Republic 
    • Chad 
    • Cote d’Ivoire 
    • China 
    • Democratic Republic of Congo 
    • Ethiopia 
    • Ghana 
    • Mozambique 
    • Niger 
    • Somalia 
    • Togo 
    • Zambia

  • States no longer infected by WPV1 or cVDPV, but which remain vulnerable to re-infection by WPV or cVDPV are listed below:

    • Kenya 
    • Papua New Guinea

Advice for travellers and further information can be found on the TRAVAX (for health professionals) and fitfortravel (for the general public) websites.

Source: WHO, 20 December 2019