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Polio Circulation in Pakistan Prompted Korea to Take Emergency Quarantine

  • Date : 2011-10-05
  • Hit : 4013

Polio Circulation in Pakistan Prompted Korea to Take Emergency Quarantine

Quarantine efforts under way to prevent polio importation

The Ministry of Health and Welfare has designated polio as emergency quarantine infectious disease to prevent importation of the virus, on an official WHO report that polio is spreading in Pakistan recently. The Ministry also said that quarantine will be strengthened against people entering Korea from 26 affected countries.

○ Polio is an infectious disease spread from person to person. It is likely to occur in areas where unsafe source of water is used. For the last decade, there has no reported case of the disease in the WHO Western Pacific Region. However, four cases were reported from China in August in 2011.

- Since five cases were reported in Korea in 1983, no case has been identified, making Korea maintain the polio-free status.

○ However, we cannot rule out a possibility of the circulation of the virus even on a small scale once the virus is imported to the country. Polio control efforts are necessary, as it may spread among foreigners in Korea, people who have not been vaccinated or people who failed to generate antibody after vaccination, it

In response, the Korea Centers for Disease Control and Prevention has designated 26 polio affected countries including Pakistan as infectious disease contaminated countries. It has strengthened quarantine measures against travelers coming from the countries on the point of entry including international airports and ports.

○ Travellers heading for the affected countries are given advice to get vaccinated before leaving Korea and follow personal hygiene measures while travelling. They are also advised to report to a quarantine officer promptly if they have symptoms like fever and headache on entry.

- When you return from an affected country and have suspicious symptoms such as fever and headache in the quarantine process, you will be subject to throat swab for rapid testing

○ As an additional measure to prevent the disease from entering Korea, the Ministry of Health and Welfare has requested cooperation of other relevant ministries to ensure that people, who want to come to Korea from Pakistan for employment, study or industrial training, receive polio vaccine before entry.

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