Polio vaccination UN Photo/Flickr

与脊髓灰质炎背水一战

日内瓦——对尼日利亚来讲这是艰难的一年。过去12个月,该国遭受了儿童自杀式炸弹袭击和博科圣地的残酷屠杀。去年在奇博克遭绑架的276名女生绝大多数至今依然下落不明。但在此期间,尽管经历了如此的恐怖,尼日利亚却已在不知不觉间实现了真正令人赞叹的目标:整整一年没有发生一例脊髓灰质炎。

这是尼日利亚及其合作伙伴根除脊髓灰质炎取得的重大成就。不到30年前,脊髓灰质炎依然困扰125个国家,每天导致1,000名儿童瘫痪。迄今为止,这种病毒被认为仅在阿富汗、巴基斯坦和尼日利亚等三国传染。卫生官员在宣布一个国家消灭脊髓灰质炎之前要等三年,但尼日利亚整整一年没有相关病例让人们燃起希望——尼日利亚乃至整个非洲都将根除脊髓灰质炎。

除去在非洲人口最多的国家照顾到每一名儿童的后勤挑战,尼日利亚脊髓灰质炎根除运动还需要战胜安全问题、宗教原教旨主义者的反对和猖獗的腐败。像尼日利亚这样的困难国家都能在预防脊髓灰质炎斗争和一般性全球卫生工作中完成这样一项壮举当然值得庆祝和乐观。尼日利亚的成功表明完全有可能将现代医学奇迹带到全世界最边缘化、最难以触及的儿童身边。

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