The Polio Survivors Rotarian Action Group and the European Polio Union are announcing that they are pooling information, and body of knowledge resources for the benefit of Polio Survivors and those with Post-Polio Syndrome (PPS) around the world.
Poliomyelitis is a disease that is on the edge of eradication in the world thanks to the combined efforts of Rotary International, the World Health Organization, UNICEF, Centers for Disease Control (CDC) and the Bill & Melinda Gates Foundation (& other generous funders), together with the thousands of volunteers and health workers who have carried out the worldwide vaccination program.
Once the disease is eradicated there will still be in excess of 15 million Polio Survivors worldwide who are going to need care, support and treatment for decades to come. Without, they are destined on the large part to shortened life expectancy, poverty and destitution certainly in the sub Saharan Africa, the Indian sub-continent and surrounding countries.
“We all acknowledge the tremendous work that has been carried by out by Rotary and its partners in bringing this virus to near extinction, and we know the final inch will be difficult but we also have to look to the future and care for all those who were unable to benefit from the vaccine for whatever reason,” said John R. McFarlane, President of the EPU. “They need help so that they can live their lives with dignity and independence.”
Ann Lee Hussey, Chair of the Polio Survivors RAG, stated “The eradication of this virus is the first part of a journey for those already affected that will last for the rest of their lives. There is much more to be done beyond eradication. We see co-operation with the EPU as the first stage in bringing the humanitarian needs of Polio Survivors and those with PPS to the fore, wherever they are in the world.”
Polio Survivors & Associates is a Rotarian Action Group (RAG) dedicated to the humanitarian assistance of Polio survivors. The European Polio Union is a group of polio Survivors’ support groups (21 organizations in 18 countries). It also arranges events to help and inform medical personnel and those affected by polio and Post Polio Syndrome on best practice and treatment of the condition. The two groups have a common goal – to help and improve the lives of Polio Survivors and those with PPS.