Polio eradication - NIGERIA

Nigeria is one of three countries in the world that still has polio. Cases have decreased significantly since an eradication program was started in 1996, however several barriers still preven total eradication. in 2003 Muslim clerics in Kano state started a boycott of the vaccine that would last 1 year. They feared the campaign could be a western conspiracy to sterilize the population. Even today urban centers in the north still have widespread distrust of the government, which can discourage parents vaccinating their children. In Feruary 2013 several polio workers were murdered in Kano for unknown reasons. The nomadic Fulani account for less than 3% of cases, but form an important link in the transmission train. Numbers and records of Fulani nomads are incomplete, but hundreds of thousands of Fulani children have received none, or only partial oral polio vaccine doses. As they migrate sometimes twice a year, they interact with people at markets, and their migration routes are known for low vaccination coverage. Therefore they can easily spread polio as they migrate. Vaccination amongst the Fulani population is a vital and urgent undertaking and a key component in the eradication of polio in Nigeria. As part of the global emergency action plan against polio N-Stop (National Stop Transmission of Polio) started a census of Fulani in June 2012 in hard to reach populations. They meticulously and tirelessly move through camp to camp on foot, motorbikes, and occasionally cars, vaccinating these thousands of children that are scattered and moving throughout northern Nigeria.