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The authorities did not find a single case of polio. The UK Health Safety Agency (UKHSA) said the risk of infection is low due to high vaccination coverage.
However, following the discovery of the virus during routine wastewater surveillance, the agency urged parents to vaccinate their children, especially those who may have missed vaccinations during the COVID-19 pandemic.
Nationwide vaccination rates exceed the 90% required to prevent outbreaks. But during the pandemic in London, vaccination coverage for children under two years of age has fallen below safe levels.
Polio, spread mainly through fecal matter, kills and paralyzes thousands of children worldwide every year. There is no cure, but vaccination has brought it closer world to eradicate the disease.
The agency said an investigation into community transmission of the virus is ongoing.
The last case of polio in the UK was in 1984. Currently, polio occurs only in Afghanistan and Pakistan, with imported outbreaks reported in Malawi and Mozambique in 2022.
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