New Polio Vaccine Method Is Faster And Safer, Colorado Expert Says

May 23, 2016

The world is getting closer than ever to eradicating polio, and a new study by a Colorado researcher provides scientific evidence backing the switch to a new global vaccine strategy.

Polio is a contagious viral illness that can cause paralysis, even death. 

Most low- and middle-income countries have used an oral vaccine of three components. But poor health and sanitation conditions meant many children needed multiple doses to meet necessary protection.

The new method implemented globally last month reduces that to an injectable dose of vaccine plus an oral vaccine. It could protect up to 90 percent of children and bolster community protection.

A study by Dr. Edwin Asturias of Children’s Hospital Colorado finds the new vaccine is faster and safer to use.

“This inactivated vaccine not only is safer because it doesn’t allow the live virus to replicate, but it produces very good immunity," Asturias said.