Thailand destroys 1.2 mn doses of type-2 poliovirus vaccines

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BANGKOK – The Ministry of Public Health has burnt 1.2 million doses of type-2 poliovirus vaccines and pledged to burn all of the vaccines nationwide by 28 April 2016 before new poliovirus vaccines are used.

According to the ministry, polio is a severe infectious disease caused by poliovirus type 1, 2 and 3. In the past, there were many hundreds of thousands of polio patients worldwide each year but last year, there were only two polio-affected countries—Afghanistan and Pakistan. As for Thailand, the last polio patient was found in April 1997 and the country remained free from the disease until now.

Since poliovirus type 2 has been eradicated worldwide, there is no need for type-2 poliovirus vaccines. New poliovirus vaccines will be used in Thailand from 29 April onwards.

The World Health Organization has set a time frame for each country to destroy type-2 poliovirus vaccines without contaminating the environment.