Four infants in northwest China’s Xinjiang Uygur Autonomous Region have been diagnosed with polio, the local health authority reported on 26 August.
The four patients, aged from four months to two years, are all from Hotan Prefecture, including two from Hotan city and one each from Lop and Yutian counties, Xinjiang’s regional health department said in a press release. It said the cases were reported from 3 to 17 July.
As of 26 August, two of the patients have recovered and been discharged from hospital, and the other two who remain hospitalized are in stable condition, it said.
The Chinese Center for Disease Control and Prevention said on its website that the virus had been confirmed by the World Health Organization (WHO) to be imported from Pakistan. The center said the WHO confirmed after gene sequencing that the virus had a 99 percent resemblance with the wild poliovirus that caused an outbreak in Pakistan in 2009. Chinese Ministry of Health sent a team of experts to Xinjiang Thursday to assist in disease prevention.
There are currently four polio-endemic countries in the world, Afghanistan, India, Nigeria and Pakistan, and Xinjiang neighbors three. Prior to the Hotan outbreak, China had been polio-free for 11 years.
Source: Xinhua News Agency