From July through September 2018, six cases of circulating vaccine-derived poliovirus type 2 (cVDPV2) were reported from Niger, genetically linked to a cVDPV2 case in Jigawa and Katsina States, Nigeria, according to WHO.

Niger (in red) Image/FireSky
Niger (in red)

The virus was isolated from children with acute flaccid paralysis (AFP) from Zinder region, located in the south of Niger and on the border with Nigeria, with dates of onset of paralysis ranging from 18 July through 16 September 2018. This outbreak has also affected Jigawa, Katsina, Yobe, Gombe, and Borno states in Nigeria, with 19 cases reported since April 2018.

As part of the polio outbreak response in the Lake Chad Basin countries (Cameroon, the Central African Republic, Chad, Niger and Nigeria) the last monovalent oral polio vaccine type 2 (mOPV2) round was implemented in Niger in January 2017.

The outbreak response plan is being finalized to include the outbreak zone most at risk and the exact scale and extent of the response is being determined.

  • Two mOPV2 response vaccination campaigns will reach 3.2 million children under five years of age in four provinces in Niger (Agadez, Diffa, Maradi and Zinder). The first round took place from 24 through 27 October 2018 and the second is scheduled for 7 through 11 November 2018.
  • Acute flaccid paralysis surveillance and routine immunization across the country with focus on the infected provinces and the provinces at the international borders with Nigeria are being reinforced.
  • WHO and its partners are continuing to support local public health authorities in conducting field investigations and risk assessments to more clearly assess risk of the identified cVDPV2 and to conduct additional response measures as appropriate and necessary.
  • Active case finding for additional AFP cases is continuing, and additional surveillance measures such as increasing the frequency and extent of environmental surveillance and community sampling of healthy individuals is being expanded.
  • WHO is supporting the Ministry of Health to strengthen the risk communication and community engagement.
  • WHO in collaboration with the Ministry of Health are working together to finalize the deployment of the human resources needed at national and provincial levels.