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Updated: Mar 11, 2021

Author: Vaibhav Goyal, IV Year of B.A.,LL.B(Hons), from University Institute of Legal Studies, Panjab University (SSGRC, HSP.), Chandigarh.

Jonas Salk never took a patent for his discovery. When asked, "Who owns the patent on this vaccine?", Jonas Salk is said to have answered: "Well, the people, I would say. There is no patent."Can you patent the Sun?"

In 1948 Jonas Salk started his experimentation on polio immunization at the University of Pittsburgh School of Medicine USA. It is accounted that "He found that there were three strains of the polio infection and had a test trivalent arrangement by 1952. During the main security preliminaries from May 1953 through March 1954, Salk directed the antibody to more than 5,300 people, including himself, his better half, and his three children. "Nobody experienced awful results, and blood tests uncovered antibodies against the sickness".

With financing from the "March of Dimes" Foundation and a large number of individual contributions from across America, Salk attempted one of the greatest field preliminaries ever. In 1953-54, more than 1.8 million younger students in America, later to be known as "POLIO PIONEERS", spread in 44 states across America, were regulated the Salk polio immunization.

On 27 March 2014, the World Health Organization (WHO) proclaimed India a polio-free country with no instance of illness having been accounted for over the most recent three years.

We have all seen the overwhelming impacts of polio, particularly among kids the world over and in India as well. The researcher to thank for finding the Polio Vaccine is Jonas Salk, who disclosed it in 1955. This ended up being a significant achievement for the entirety of humankind. When of the Great Depression, polio was maybe the most dreaded infection on earth. Pandemics were accounted for yearly, and in 1952, polio arrived at the top in the United States, with more than 21,000 cases detailed.

US President Franklin Roosevelt pronounced a War on Polio during his organization, dispatching March of Dimes mission to build up and antibody. In 1955, the mission proved to be fruitful when Dr. Jonas Salk built up the main antibody against polio – and injectable inactivated polio immunization. In 1961, Dr. Albert Sabin built up a "live" oral polio antibody (OPV) which quickly turned into the antibody of decision for the most public inoculation programs internationally.

Following the achievement of smallpox annihilation in 1977, Rotary International dispatched its yearning dream to kill polio in 1985. PolioPlus was conceived – the first and biggest globally organized private-area backing of a general wellbeing activity.

In 1988, the World Health Assembly cast a ballot to dispatch the Global Polio Eradication Initiative (GPEI). Around then, wild poliovirus was endemic in 125 nations, incapacitating more than 1000 youngsters consistently. Today, native polio has been killed from everything except three nations— Afghanistan, Nigeria, and Pakistan.

Poliomyelitis, regularly called polio or childish loss of motion, is an intense viral irresistible sickness spread from one individual to another, fundamentally through the fecal-oral course. There is no solution for polio. The focal point of present-day treatment has been on giving alleviation of side effects and forestalling inconveniences.

In 1978, the Government of India started and immunization program to kill poliomyelitis (polio) in the country by inoculating all kids younger than five years against polio infection. By 1984, it was fruitful in covering around 40% of all newborn children in the country.

In 1985, the Universal Immunization Program (UIP) was dispatched by the Government to cover all the locales in the country. This program prompted a huge expansion in inclusion from 40% up to 95%. The number of revealed instances of polio additionally declined from 28,757 during 1987 to 3,265 every 1995 – a huge drop, given the way that the Government was managing enormous quantities of kids beneath the age of five years in the country.

To accomplish 100% destruction of polio among youngsters in the country, the Government of India dispatched the now prestigious "Pulse Polio Program" in 1995, for which they roped in Amitabh Bachchan and different famous people to advocate the program.

The primary examples of overcoming adversity were just achieved in 1994 when the local administration of New Delhi led an effective mass inoculation crusade — focusing on 1,000,000 youngsters as long as three years old — that the thought started to make strides that India may have the option to handle this sickness. Following accomplishment in New Delhi, India dispatched its first cross-country polio vaccination crusade in 1995. It held National vaccination days (NIDs) to inoculate all youngsters up to the age of five years.

The National Polio Surveillance Project (NPSP) was set up in 1997 for poliovirus observation through a joint effort between the WHO and the Government of India. This observation exertion affirmed the last detailed worldwide instance of wild poliovirus type 2 of every 1999 in Aligarh, Uttar Pradesh.

In 2001, UNICEF set up the Social Mobilization Network (SMNet) in Uttar Pradesh to assemble the local area for polio inoculation and the superstar Bollywood celebrity Amitabh Bachchan turned into the UNICEF Brand Ambassador for polio. The endeavors of the entertainer were subsequently recognized by Bill Gates as incredibly helping endeavors to kill polio in India.

The Government ran commercials in the print media of the country over and on Radio and Television. The last revealed instances of polio in India were in West Bengal and Gujarat on 13 January 2011.

In May 2006, the monovalent oral polio immunization type 1 (OPV1) was presented as a focused-on mediation upon entering the world in Western Uttar Pradesh. Monovalent OPV1 was suggested due to its more prominent adequacy against WPV1 when contrasted with trivalent OPV due to the body centering counter-acting agent creation against just one strain.

The utilization of mOPV1 in most polio adjusts had diminished type 1 wild poliovirus (WPV) transmission to record low levels. Be that as it may, in 2009, India encountered a flare-up of type-3 WPV. WPV exists in three sorts. Insusceptibility against one sort doesn't mean one is resistant to the others. This implied that as instances of type-1 WPV fell, a flare-up of 659 instances of dominating type-3 poliovirus diseases was as yet ready to happen. Around a lot of them happened in UP and seventeen percent in the province of Bihar.

The last polio case in India was accounted for in 2011 out of a two-year-old young lady, Rukhsar Khatun in Howrah, West Bengal. In quiet, her two kin got polio immunizations. Rukhsar, in any case, was frequently debilitated with the runs and, despite support from neighborhood wellbeing laborers, her folks had thought it was more secure for her to dodge the immunization.

In light of the sole instance of polio in 2011 in Howrah, an enormous scope mop-up inoculation action was dispatched inside seven days of notice of the case. This focused on activity worked, and India was at last taken out from the rundown of polio-endemic nations in the wake of finishing a year without revealing any instance of polio in January 2012.

This last instance of polio in the country is evidence of the way that any looseness in vaccination can permit instances of the illness to happen.

As per the at that point Minister for Health and Family Welfare, Ghulam Nabi Azad, "this accomplishment was made conceivable with the native bivalent polio antibody, satisfactory domestic monetary assets and close checking of the polio program, with which vaccination levels took off to 99 percent inclusion and permitted India to accomplish polio annihilation."

The tremendousness of the Indian campaign is difficult to digest. There are more than 700,000 inoculation corners in each mission drove by 2.5 million vaccinators, who have 2 million antibody transporter sacks, which are kept cool with 6.3 million ice packs. In one public polio round, more than 200 million homes were visited and more than 170 million kids were inoculated.

While 91 mn children were vaccinated at booths on this decade’s first ‘Polio Ravivar’ (Polio Sunday) on 31 January 2021 across all states and UTs, over 19 mn were vaccinated during house-to-house vaccination drives over the next two days.

Wild poliovirus cases continue to be reported in neighboring Pakistan and Afghanistan. As long as a single child remains infected, children in all countries are at risk of contracting polio. Failure to eradicate polio from these last remaining strongholds could result in as many as 200 000 new cases every year, within 10 years, all over the world.

India continues to hold one NID and two Sub-National Immunization Days (SNIDs) for polio every year to maintain population immunity against wild poliovirus and to sustain its polio-free status. To provide additional protection, the Government of India has introduced the injectable Inactivated Polio Vaccine into its routine immunization program.


  • Stanley A. Plotkin, Mass Vaccination: Global Aspects - Progress and Obstacles, Springer Berlin Heidelberg, 2006

  • Thomas Abraham, Polio: The Odyssey of Eradication, Hurst, 2018

  • Sharath Ahuja, 60th Anniversary of Polio Vaccine: The Complete Story of India’s Fight Against Polio, The Better India, 2015

  • 110 million children vaccinated in the country’s first polio drive of the decade, World Health Organisation, 2021

  • Smitha Nair, Interview: Could Covid-19 vaccination undo India’s hard-won battle against polio?, Scroll, 2021

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