Cameroon in race to contain polio outbreak

Cameroon has set 120-day deadline to contain a polio outbreak in the country.

The Central African nation plans to vaccinate 122,225 children under the age of five years before November.

The country’s Ministry of Health announced the plan, noting that a wild polio virus was found in Mada and Makari health districts in northern Cameroon.

According to the World Health Organization (WHO), laboratory results indicate that the virus was similar to one found in Nigeria in 2008.

The agency rated the situation as critical, and urged that Cameroonian health authorities contain the polio virus quickly.

In response, the Cameroon health authorities will initiate a massive vaccination drive, which will include door-to-door visits and a countrywide sensitization program.

Polio, or poliomyelitis, mainly affects children aged under five

It is a highly infectious disease caused by a virus that invades the nervous system and can cause total paralysis in a matter of hours

Initial symptoms include fever, fatigue, headache, vomiting, stiffness of the neck and pains in the limbs