New York Declares Polio Emergency

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New York declared a disaster emergency Friday after poliovirus was found in Long Island wastewater samples, signifying community spread of the paralysing virus.

The injunction was issued after a CDC sequence analysis identified polio in a Nassau County wastewater sample in August.

The sample was genetically linked to a case of paralytic polio in Rockland County, north of New York City, this summer – the first in in a decade.

The virus has also been found in Orange, Sullivan, and NYC wastewater samples. According to the state Department of Health, all reported samples contain paralysing poliovirus.

Health experts say "for every paralytic polio case, hundreds more are infected," yet the state has only confirmed one.

Health Commissioner Mary Bassett again urged all New Yorkers to ensure they’re up-to-date with polio vaccinations.

The risk of paralysis from polio is real, she said. "I advise New Yorkers to avoid risk." Polio vaccine is safe and effective, protecting nearly everyone who receive required doses.

The order also requires health providers to report polio immunisation data to the state Department of Health, which helps state and local health officials target high-need areas for vaccinations.

State of emergency ends Oct. 9. It follows Hochul's emergency declarations for the monkeypox outbreak and Covid-19 pandemic

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