Following the discovery of the polio virus in another county this week, New York Governor Kathy Hochul proclaimed a state of disaster emergency. The directive empowers doctors and nurse practitioners to issue standing orders for polio immunizations and permits EMS personnel, midwives, and pharmacists to administer the vaccine.
According to a news release from the New York State Department of Health, “On polio, we simply cannot roll the dice.” “The risk of paralytic disease is real if you or your child are not up to date on immunizations. I urge New Yorkers to not tolerate any risk at all.”
The polio virus was discovered in a man who was an adult and unvaccinated in Rockland County, which is located north of New York City, in July. Since 2013, there had been no verified cases of the virus in the country until now.
Health officials in the state of New York have not reported any new cases of polio. Additionally, polio has been found in wastewater samples from New York City, Rockland, Orange, and Sullivan counties as far back as April. The virus was discovered in Long Island’s Nassau County wastewater in August.
According to the release, the state Department of Health hopes to raise the polio immunisation rate in New York from 79% to above 90%. Vaccination rates in several areas, such as Rockland County (60%), Orange County (59%), and Sullivan County (62%), are significantly lower than the state average. The polio immunisation rate in Nassau County is comparable to the state average.
When given in the proper doses, the vaccine against polio protects almost all people from contracting the illness, according to Basset. “Get your vaccines right away.”