Polio Infection and Vaccination

On September 14, the Madagascar Ministry of Health began a polio vaccination campaign for all children age 0 to 15.  The aim is to ensure all children in this age group are vaccinated.  According to the World Health Organization (WHO), eight new cases of polio were reported to health authorities since September, 2014.  Also, according to WHO and the United Nations Childrens’ Fund (UNICEF):

  • It is important to vaccinate all children under 15 with two doses of oral Sabin polio vaccine (OPV).
  • Fully immunized children should also receive the OPV because they could have been contaminated by the circulating polio virus and contribute to the spread of the transmission as a healthy virus carrier.
  • Repeated vaccination is safe and efficient to reach a collective immunity that is necessary to interrupt transmission.

The U.S. Embassy in Antananarivo urges all U.S. Citizens residing in and traveling to Madagascar to review their vaccination records and receive the polio vaccine if necessary.

To obtain for further information on polio in Madagascar, visit the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) travel notices.  You can also call the CDC at 1-800-CDC-INFO (1-800-232-4636) from within the United States, or 1-404-639-3534 from overseas, or visit the CDC website at http://www.cdc.gov/travel.

For further information:

  • See the State Department’s travel website for the Worldwide Caution, Travel Warnings, Travel Alerts.
  • Enroll in the Smart Traveler Enrollment Program (STEP) to receive security messages and make it easier to locate you in an emergency.
  • Contact the U.S. Embassy in Madagascar located at Lot 207 A, Point Liberty, Andranoro, Antehiroka,105 Antananarivo at Tel: +(261) (23) 480 00/01, 7:30a.m. to 5:00p.m., Monday through Thursday and 7:30 a.m. to 01:30 p.m. on Friday. After-hours emergency number for U.S. citizens is +(261) (20) (23) 480 00.
  • Call 1-888-407-4747 toll-free in the United States and Canada or 1-202-501-4444 from other countries from 8:00 a.m. to 8:00 p.m. Eastern Standard Time, Monday through Friday (except U.S. federal holidays).