Sumi’s case not polio, India still polio-free: Government

The government today claimed that the widely reported case of polio in West Bengal was not, in fact, one.

Media reports had claimed that India’s multi-year effort to wipe out polio from the country had failed, with the case of Sumi Naskar 18-month old girl from from Baruipur, 24-Parganas South.

India has not reported any case of polio since 13 January 2011 and has been struck off the list of countries with active endemic wild polio transmission in February 2012.

“Both the stool samples of the child were found negative for polio in the Institute of Serology Kolkata,” the government said.

The child was admitted to a hospital in Kolkata earlier this month from where she was picked up by the polio surveillance network for investigation.

“As part of surveillance for polio, any child less than 15 years of age who suddenly develops floppiness or weakness or paralysis in any part of the body is investigated thoroughly. These cases are called Acute Flaccid Paralysis (AFP) cases.Polio is one of the several causes of AFP and not the only cause for AFP,” the government said in a statement today.

Stool samples of the girl were collected on 13 March and 14 March and sent to the Institute of Serology Kolkata for investigation. Stool samples are collected from all AFP cases and tested to rule out polio as a cause of the illness.

Sumi is one of the many AFP cases detected this year and investigated for polio.

In 2012 so far, around 9,000 AFP cases have been investigated by NPSP with the support of local health authorities. All the stool samples of these AFP cases have tested negative for polio.