Polio in Pakistan

The first polio outbreaks in Europe were reported in the early 19th century, and polio outbreaks were first reported in the United States in 1843. The population was controlled after the introduction of inactivated polio vaccine, IPV, in 1955. Now it is said to be a global health issue that the Syrian and Pakistan population is suffering with.

Polio is a disease caused by a virus that affects the nervous system and is mainly spread by person-to-person contact. Polio can also be spread by drinking water or other drinks or eating raw or undercooked food that are contaminated with the feces of an infected person. This can be from any companies with poor sanitation regulations that might have affected employees, people sharing drinks or food items or utensils with those who are affected, or people who are living in an environment with unsafe sewerage areas.

It was said that the cases in Pakistan were rising because of the hold on vaccinations being issued to the community due to the drone strikes that having been targeting the vaccine workers. This has cause the polio virus to spread into other countries as well.The best ways to control this global issues is to increase the polio vaccination coverage, improving surveillance for alleged cases, meaning that taking more precaution to complaints about similar symptoms that are involved with polio and reporting them. Lastly government, anthropologist and non-government officials are coming up with ways to have national immunization days, making sure that vaccination are covered from household to household and prevention is taught to avoid this deadly virus and disease.

A book review from Samuel L. Katz on the book “Chasing Polio in Pakistan” by Anthropologist Svea Closser, quotes that “awareness of power relationships and resistance as well as formal planning for institutional flexibility would, I believe, better position eradication programs to reach their goals. Taking these steps might shift the balance from the possible toward the probable.” Closser also believe to solve the problems in Pakistan is to evaluate the societal and political considerations, not virologic or immunologic factors, which who are preventing eradication.


Locke, Susannah. “Why Polio Is Back.” Vox. May 7, 2014. Accessed August 5, 2014.

Katz, Samuel L. “Chasing Polio in Pakistan: Why the World’s Largest Public Health Initiative May Fail.” Journal of Clinical Investigation 12, no. 2 (2011).

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