Poliomyelitis

Poliomyelitis (polio) is a highly infectious and sometimes fatal disease, which invades the nervous system and can cause life-long paralysis. In June 2002, all 53 countries in the WHO European Region were certified polio free. A sustained effort of immunization and disease surveillance helps maintain the Region’s polio-free status and ensures that no polio case can be left undetected.

Maintaining the Region's polio-free status

Top story

Review of polio-related risks in the WHO European Region as global eradication nears

With endemic circulation of wild poliovirus now confined to 3 countries in the world and a record low number of cases detected so far this year, global eradication of poliomyelitis (polio) is closer than ever.

Polio outbreak simulation exercises (POSE)

Polio Outbreak Simulation Exercise (POSE)

POSE news, materials and implementation reports

Polio Endgame Strategic Plan

The comprehensive, long-term strategy to deliver a polio-free world by 2018.

Step-by-step eradication of polio

European Immunization Week

Each year in April, EIW promotes the core message that the immunization of every child is vital to prevent diseases and protect life. The goal of the region-wide campaign is to increase vaccination coverage by raising awareness of the importance of immunization. EIW 2017 was celebrated on 24–30 April.

This year's campaign

Immunize Europe Forum

Online forum for immunization professionals to find and share information on immunization topics and events.

Visit the Forum

Publications

Meeting of the Polio Laboratory Network of the WHO European Region

Laboratories of the Russian Federation and newly independent states

More publications

Key resources

  • CISID

    WHO/Europe infectious disease data set, compiled from reports submitted by Member States

  • WHO EpiBrief and EpiData

    Summary and analysis of data on selected vaccine-preventable diseases

  • Polio laboratory data management system

    Information and resources for the Regional Polio Lab Network

  • CISID

    WHO/Europe infectious disease data set, compiled from reports submitted by Member States

  • Immunization Resource Centre

    Documents designed to assist health professionals in their day-to-day work as it relates to immunization

Data and statistics

1 in 200

infections with poliovirus leads to irreversible paralysis. There is no cure for polio, it can only be prevented. Polio vaccine, given multiple times, can protect a child for life.

More data and statistics

WHO_Europe_VPI twitter feed