The number of wild poliovirus 1 (WPV 1) cases in two of the three endemic countries has increased by 2 and 19 cases, respectively.

Afghanistan Pakistan map/Public domain image- Pahari Sahib
Afghanistan Pakistan map/Public domain image- Pahari Sahib

Afghanistan reported two WPV1 cases during the past week. Both were from Kandahar province (1 from Kandahar district and one from the previously uninfected Panjwayi district), according to the Global Polio Eradication Initiative (GPEI).

This brings the total cases to 12 for 2014 for Afghanistan.

In neighboring Pakistan, which is the polio hotspot on the globe, 19 new WPV 1 cases reported during the past week.

Of the 19, six are from the Federally Administered Tribal Areas (FATA) (1 from North Waziristan, 1 from South Waziristan and 4 from Khyber Agency); 9 are from Khyber Pakhtunkhwa province (1 from Tank district, 2 from Mardan district, 1 from the previously uninfected district of Nowshera and 5 from Peshawar district); 1 case from Balochistan province in Quetta district; 2 from Sindh province (1 in Khigadap and the other from the previously uninfected Khibinqasim district); and 1 from Punjab province, in the previously uninfected district of Sheikupura.

Pakistan has now recorded 206 polio cases so far in 2014. By comparison, Pakistan recorded 39 cases this time in 2013.

The GPEI says immunization activities are continuing in Pakistan with particular focus on known high-risk areas, in particular the newly opened areas of FATA. At exit and entry points, 163 permanent vaccination points are being used to reach internally displaced families as they leave their homes.

Globally, there is now 243 polio cases reported in 2014 to date.