Aug 10, 2018

Registration opens for Ohio Polio Network Conference

Photo Provided Warren Peascoe in a power wheelchair.
PARKERSBURG — Registration is underway for the Ohio Polio Network Conference 9:30 a.m. Sept. 15 at Tuscora Park in New Philadelphia, Ohio, Warren Peascoe, president of the Mid-Ohio Valley Post-Polio Support Group of the Wood County Society, announced.
The cost is $25 for a polio survivor or $40 for a survivor plus attendant. A hot lunch is included. The support group is affiliated with the network, an association of polio support groups based in Ohio.
The scheduled speakers and topics are: Hallie Baker, associate professor in the Psychology Department, Muskingum University, on “Survivors of Polio and Their Families: Triumphs of the Past and Challenges of the Present and Future;” Dr. Roswell B. Dorset III, DO, board certified neurologist, Neurology and Neuroscience Inc., Akron, on “Medical Aspects of Post-Polio Syndrome: Symptoms, Progression and Treatment.”
For registration forms, call Brenda Ferguson at 330 671-7103. Forms can also be obtained from the network website, Completed forms, accompanied by payment, must be post-marked by Sept. 1.
Peascoe, a chemist with a doctorate and a survivor of polio, worked in the chemical industry for about 30 years until the late effects of polio forced him to take disability retirement. From childhood, he walked with braces and crutches. He reared a family, took part in water sports and was successfully employed. When he moved to Wood County, he had difficulty finding doctors able to treat the late effects of polio, he said. 
Polio vaccines have eliminated polio in the USA. 
After decades of a stable condition, polio survivors began to experience new weakness and pain. The new weakness and pain became recognized as post polio syndrome. In the 1980s the survivors began to organize support groups and conferences across the country to educate the public and medical professionals about the condition.

Post Polio Litaff, Association A.C _APPLAC Mexico

Aug 9, 2018

A true beacon of light in Singapore, Dr William Tan overcomes polio and cancer to change lives

Just recently, Her Majesty Queen Elizabeth II awarded Singaporean Dr William Tan the Commonwealth Points of Light Award for his outstanding contribution to the community.
Dr William Tan's story is really quite outstanding. He was born in 1957 and contracted polio at aged 2 which left him paralyzed from the waist down. Immediately, Dr Tan was dealt quite a difficult hand in life, having to live his life bound to a wheel-chair and struggle much more than any able-bodied person would - particularly in childhood when he would be picked on for being different.
But with a real strength of character and determination, Dr Tan overcame adversity and struggles to become a neuroscientist and medical doctor, receiving his education at Newcastle University in the UK. He was also well on his way to becoming quite an accomplished wheelchair-athlete by this time, competing in the 1988 Paralympics in Seoul and using his athleticism to raise money for worthy charitable organisations.
In the early 2000s, Dr Tan was awarded the Chevening Scholarship from the UK government to pursue a postgraduate education in Oxford University. It was there that he was introduced to marathons which would change his sporting career drastically, beginning with the London Marathon. It opened up a whole new horizon for him. Since then, Dr Tan has competed in over 60 ultra marathons around the world and holds six endurance marathon world records including the "fastest time to complete three marathons in three consecutive days in three countries".
In 2007, Dr Tan became the first person in the world to accomplish a marathon in a wheelchair in the North Pole in 21 hours and 10 mins despite overwhelming obstacles and extreme conditions of –25 deg C to raise funds for Global Flying Hospitals. The very same year, he became the fastest person in the world to complete 7 marathons across 7 continents in 26 days to raise funds for international charities on 7 continents.
Through his races, Dr Tan has helped raised more than $18 million for local and international charities around the world including Polioplus for the worldwide eradication of polio and Operation Smile that works to provide cleft lop and palate operations to children around the world.
Everything seemed to be going quite well for Dr Tan who was at the top of his game in sports while also building quite a reputable career in medicine. Unfortunately in 2009, tragedy struck again. Dr Tan was diagnosed with Stage 4 leukemia. Stage 4 is also commonly referred to as end-stage cancer, meaning there was a very slim chance of recovery. His doctors gave him only 9 to 12 months to live. Dr Tan was devastated.
But of course, if we've learned anything about his till this point is that he isn't one to give up so easily. Dr Tan underwent grueling months of chemotherapy followed by a bone marrow transplant in an effort to kick his cancer into remission.
"It started me thinking very seriously how I have lived my life. And I shared with my wife, if I was given a second chance, I'm going to do more, much more".
Dr Tan became a champion for patients who couldn't afford the high cost of cancer treatments in Singapore and he continued to race marathons to raise funds for worthy causes. Just a year after the bone marrow transplant, Dr Tan achieved his best time ever in the Berlin paracycling marathon event and accomplished two full marathons with better finishing times than his pre-cancer days. Talk about astounding achievements.
Now, Dr Tan has gotten into badminton and is training very hard in hopes to represent Singapore in the 2020 Paralympic Games in Tokyo.
About two months ago, Dr Tan marked a significant milestone in his battle with leukemia: 10 years of remission.
"A 10 years remission for Stage 4 Leukemia is a big thing, and you bet that I have ever since then been living my life with gratitude."
Dr Tan was already quite an incredible man even before cancer. He rose above his disability to achieve some amazing things in his life - marathons, fundraising, and being a medical doctor. He was already quite an inspiration.
But following the cancer diagnosis, Dr Tan did not shrink into a shell. Instead chose to shine brighter than before, to do more - which might be inconceivable to many of us able bodied and untroubled folks. We look at his life up to that point and think that he's already done so much, he's already climbed mountains and changed hundreds of lives, what more can you do? But Dr Tan knows that his story is not over and that as long as he is able, he will continue to do everything he can to give back to the world.
Dr William Tan is undoubtedly a true point of light in the world and this prestigious honour from the Queen of England is entirely well-deserved.
This entry was posted in People.

Post Polio Litaff, Association A.C _APPLAC Mexico

Aug 6, 2018

Polio case confirmed in Enga, Papua New Guinea

Department of Health and WHO conducting joint field investigation following confirmation of case in another province

The National Department of Health of Papua New Guinea (NDOH) and the World Health Organization (WHO) today announced a case of polio in a 3-year old boy from Mulitaka, Laigam District in Enga Province. The case is the third in the country, following confirmation of two cases from Lae, Morobe Province in June and July 2018.
The confirmation was made on Friday 3 August 2018 by the Victorian Infectious Disease Reference Laboratory—a WHO Collaborating Centre in Australia. The boy had an onset of symptoms on 30 June and onset of paralysis on 2 July. His vaccination history is unknown due to unavailability of the baby clinic book, and his travel history is being established.
Results from the global polio laboratory at the United States Centers for Disease Control and Prevention confirmed that the new case is genetically linked to the other two cases from Morobe Province.
“The detection of the case is a result of our enhanced surveillance system put in place in all provinces in response to the confirmed polio cases in Morobe province,” according to Pascoe Kase, Secretary of the National Department of Health. “A joint NDOH and WHO team is currently in the field to conduct an epidemiological investigation. Confirmation of this case in Enga highlights that the outbreak has spread geographically, and this is a concern. It is critical that all children are rapidly vaccinated as part of the ongoing outbreak response in the country, to stop the spread of this virus and prevent further children from being paralysed.”
“The identification of this case underscores the importance of maintaining high levels of routine vaccination coverage and effective surveillance systems for early detection”, said Dr Luo Dapeng, WHO Representative in Papua New Guinea. “The virus can emerge in populations which are inadequately immunized. In many provinces, including Enga, the vaccination coverage is far below the required level.”
Given substantial vaccination coverage gaps across the country, the risk of further spread of polio within the country continues to be classified as high, particularly with confirmation of spread of the virus to Enga.
“Any province with low routine immunization coverage or gaps in vaccination coverage during the outbreak response is vulnerable for polio virus circulation. This is highlighted by the new confirmed case in Enga,” said David Mcloughlin, UNICEF Representative in Papua New Guinea.
The National Polio Response Emergency Operations Center is currently updating its risk assessment and planning the enhancement of response operations, including possible expansion of vaccination to the entire Highlands Region.
More than 600 000 doses of oral polio vaccine have already been distributed in Papua New Guinea for supplemental immunization activities. Additional supplies for the remainder of the response are expected to arrive in country in the coming days.

Post Polio Litaff, Association A.C _APPLAC Mexico

Aug 5, 2018

Polio virus found in Lahore sewage

LAHORE: Samples of water collected from Lahore’s sewage have been found to be carrying the polio virus for two consecutive months, health authorities said on Thursday.
The Department of Health Punjab confirmed the presence of the polio virus in the city’s sewerage waters after testing samples collected from Outfall Road on July 11. The crippling virus was also found in the sewage samples gathered earlier in June. 
Polio, or poliomyelitis, is a crippling childhood disease caused by the polio virus, and preventable through immunisation. Pakistan is one of only three countries in the world, along with Afghanistan and Nigeria, that suffers from endemic polio, a childhood virus that can cause paralysis or death.
Terming the consistent presence of the virus in Lahore’s sewage a challenge, the health department has summoned a meeting of concerned officials over the issue. 
The department has also decided to propose inclusion of all areas of the city in a polio vaccination drive commencing from August 6. 
Pakistan has been battling polio for the past several years and is close to completely eradicating the disease. 
The number of cases declined from 306 in 2014 to 54 in 2015, 20 in 2016 and eight in 2017. In 2018, three polio cases have so far been reported – all from Balochistan.
A country must have no cases for three consecutive years in order to be considered to have eradicated polio by the World Health Organisation.
Affecting mostly children under the age of five, polio — which has no cure and can only be prevented by giving a child multiple vaccine doses — can lead to irreversible paralysis.
According to the WHO, the number of polio cases worldwide has fallen by more than 99 percent since 1988, from an estimated 350,000 cases then to 22 reported cases in 2017.

Post Polio Litaff, Association A.C _APPLAC Mexico

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