With the start of a national polio vaccination campaign, experts have been warning parents about the importance of vaccinating children. The disease was considered eradicated since 1994 in Brazil, however, it has reached other countries. Without mass vaccination, the authorities’ main warning is that there is a risk of new infections and an outbreak in Brazil.

Photo: Agência Brasil

According to Gislayne Castro e Souza de Nieto, pediatrician, Master in Teaching in Health Sciences and professor of Medicine at the Positivo University, poliovirus can cause a mild or even asymptomatic infection. However, the disease can also be serious. One of the main features of poliomyelitis is flaccid paralysis of one of the lower limbs.

The specialist points out that the greater the vaccination, the more difficult it is for the disease to return to Brazil. She explains that children under five are vaccinated as follows: at two, four and six months with the injectable vaccine, and then two boosters, at about 18 months and four years of age with the oral polio vaccine.

“The campaign has a very noble purpose, to maintain the eradication of poliomyelitis in the country, and therefore the importance of parents taking their children to update the vaccination schedule”, points out

The vaccination campaign began on Monday (8) and aims to serve at least 95% of children up to five years old and update the vaccination card until the age of 15. In 2021, only 70% of the target audience was vaccinated, already this year the vaccination against polio was below 50%.

Therefore, the idea is to increase the percentage of vaccinated.