Posted on Feb 28, 2022
As an imported case from Pakistan, this detection of type 1 wild poliovirus in Malawi does not affect the WHO African region’s wild polio-free certification status.

The Global Polio Eradication Initiative (GPEI) has confirmed a case of type 1 wild poliovirus (WPV1) in a child suffering from paralysis in Malawi. Analysis has shown the virus is genetically linked to WPV1 that had circulated in Pakistan’s Sindh province.

Detection of WPV1 outside the world’s two remaining endemic countries of Pakistan and Afghanistan is a serious concern and underscores the importance of prioritizing polio immunization activities in countries such as Malawi to prevent future instances of importation.

While the news from Malawi is disappointing, the polio program has seen importations from endemic countries to regions that have been certified wild polio-free in the past, and has moved quickly to successfully stop transmission of the virus in these areas. Now is the time for all parties — Rotary members, communities, government leaders, and global partners — to recommit to ending all forms of polio for good. Read Rotary's full statement.