Polio threat to Turkey across the Syrian refugees

Polio threat to Turkey across the Syrian refugeesimage

19 May 2015

Announced a lot of countries, including Syria, «they are free from polio» since many years, However, the ongoing crisis in Syria for the fourth year, and their impact on all aspects of life, including the health sector, caused the return of the emergence of this disease, and other infectious diseases, to some extent become neighbours fear of transmission of these diseases to them, according to the bindings international institutions concerned with health.

UN organizations have documented the return of polio to Syria in 2013, after 14 years of its disappearance that is on behalf of stoppage the vaccination campaigns against the disease in many besieged areas, or experiencing military operations as Damascus Gota and North Country side of Aleppo.

Professor and doctor Haluk Jock Oowereh, said on Monday in a medical conference in the Turkish city, Izmir, that «Turkey carrying prescription-free state of polio since 2002, due to strenuous vaccination and control our nationwide campaigns, but we now ready because of the large numbers of refugees who came to Turkey from neighbouring war zones».

Turkish academic explained that «there are fears of contagion again to Turkey, after the recent spread of polio in Syria again, it already increased the incidence of measles in Turkey, after the arrival of Syrian refugees, and in the event of continuing influx of displaced children to Turkey, we may witness again deaths due to polio, measles and other in Turkey ».

Abdul Hai Akra a paediatrician from the countryside of Idlib said «discovered cases reached alarming levels, and lack of medical staff, and vaccines for polio, measles, and many other diseases, make us idly by in the face of this disease».

Abdul Hai said in his interview for ARA News, «With daily cases of displacement to Turkey because of the constant bombardment by the Syrian regime, surely the numbers of disease holders have moved to Turkey».

The United Nations, in cooperation with local organizations and associations of Syria, they carried out several campaigns to vaccinate against polio during the years 2014 and 2015, included several areas «liberated» in Aleppo and Idlib in northern Syria, but «remained these campaigns below the required level, because of the deteriorating security situation, and the unresponsiveness some of the dominant forces on the ground, with medical teams, and sometimes prevent them from working »according to Abdul Hai.

Polio disease is difficult to control, for being very contagious and easy to spread, and thus «one child with the disease is enough to re-spread» the opinion of the Turkish Professor Haluk Jock Oowereh.