5:13 pm - Monday April 18, 3949

WHO certifies Bangladesh polio-free

 The World Health Organisation (WHO) officially certified 11 Asian countries including Bangladesh free of polio Thursday (March 27th), a milestone lauded as a “momentous victory”, AFP reported.

The countries certified were India, Bangladesh, Bhutan, South Korea, Indonesia, Maldives, Burma, Nepal, Sri Lanka, Thailand and East Timor.

polio The region was certified by a panel of experts after the countries went three years without reporting a new case.

The WHO said the certification means 80% of the world’s population lives in polio-free regions and is an important step towards global eradication.

“This is a momentous victory for the millions of health workers who have worked with governments, nongovernmental organizations, civil society and international partners to eradicate polio from the region,” WHO Southeast Asia regional director Poonam Khetrapal Singh said.

There are only three countries where polio is still endemic – Pakistan, Afghanistan and Nigeria.