Microsoft Corporation MSFT co-founder Bill Gates, also one of the biggest donors to the World Health Organization, has been battling to eradicate certain diseases spreading across the world.
Gates and his philanthropic initiative, the Bill & Melinda Gates Foundation, have worked for years to eliminate polio.
In 2013, Gates announced that his foundation would contribute $1.8 billion to the polio eradication campaign.
Talking about this spreading disease and how various countries have taken measures to control it, Gates said in one of his notes, “An improved polio vaccine was given an emergency license during the pandemic and is now being used in 20 countries. The last places with endemic cases of wild polio are Pakistan and Afghanistan. With the right level of funding and stability, eradication has a strong chance of succeeding in 3 to 4 years—which will make it only the second disease after smallpox to be eradicated.”
However, he warned that recent cases in Malawi and Mozambique and the recent detection of poliovirus in sewage in London remind us that it will spread back globally if we don’t get rid of it completely.
Recently, Gates tweeted about the onset of polio cases in the U.S. and around the world, and warned that until we end polio for good, it remains a threat to humanity.
— Bill Gates (@BillGates) July 22, 2022
Citing rising polio cases, the U.S. Department of Health has recommended that unvaccinated individuals get vaccinated soon. In addition, people may opt for booster doses as well with the FDA-approved IPV polio vaccine.
According to UNICEF, polio cases have fallen by 99% since 1988. It had previously been virtually eradicated worldwide.
Photo: Courtesy of Red Maxwell on flickr