On the heels of two new wild poliovirus-1 (WPV-1) cases reported in Cameroon, the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) updated their travel notice to the Central African country.
As of August 11, 2014, 5 cases of polio have been reported in Cameroon for 2014. There were also 4 cases reported in 2013. This outbreak of polio is the first reported in Cameroon since 2009.
CDC recommends that all travelers to Cameroon be fully vaccinated against polio. In addition, adults who have been fully vaccinated should receive a single lifetime booster dose of polio vaccine. As of May 5, 2014, people of all ages staying in Cameroon for longer than 4 weeks may be required to show proof of polio vaccination when departing Cameroon. Polio vaccine must be received between 4 weeks and 12 months before the date of departure from Cameroon and should be officially documented on a yellow vaccination card (International Certificate of Vaccination or Prophylaxis). Travelers should talk to their doctor about making sure they are properly prepared for any requirements they may face exiting Cameroon.
Because of the risk of cross-border transmission, CDC recommends a single lifetime booster dose of polio vaccine for fully vaccinated adults who are traveling to Central African Republic (CAR), Chad, Republic of Congo, and Gabon to work in health care facilities, refugee camps, or other humanitarian aid settings. This kind of work might put people in contact with someone who has polio.
For travelers to the bordering country of Nigeria, where polio remains endemic, CDC also recommends that all adults receive a single lifetime booster dose of polio vaccine.