Polio reported in Venezuela decades after it was thought to be eradicated

Venezuela's President Maduro holds a copy of the National Constitution while he speaks during a special session of the National Constituent Assembly in Caracas

Venezuela's President Maduro holds a copy of the National Constitution while he speaks during a special session of the National Constituent Assembly in Caracas

Pakistan, Afghanistan and Nigeria, are the only other countries that suffer from endemic polio, a childhood virus that can cause paralysis or death.

. It is suspected that these are cases of circulating polio virus (cVDPV) but it has yet to be confirmed.

A case of polio has been reported in Venezuela, a country facing a severe economic and political crisis, decades after the eradication of the disease in that country, said the Pan American Health Organization (PAHO).

Poliomyelitis is a disease caused by damage to the gray axis of the spinal cord that affects children. Part of an indigenous community in Venezuela's northeastern state of Delta Amacuro, the child had not been vaccinated against polio, the statement noted.

Doctor Jose Felix Oletta, a former Minister of Health, told AFP that the last case of acute poliomyelitis in Venezuela was reported in 1989. Local health authorities took more than a month to notify the PAHO that they had identified a case of polio, although worldwide health regulations require them to do so within 24 hours. Worldwide regulations provide for a 24-hour period to notify of the detection of such a case. A staggering 85 percent of measles cases reported across all of Latin America and the Caribbean have come from Venezuela.

As per the report, most of the neighbouring states, where people from Venezuela have migrated due to the political and social crisis, have also reported cases of polio among the Venezuelan immigrants. Maduro's government blames USA sanctions for the woes.

The government on April 6 launched a new vaccine campaign against 14 diseases including measles and TB.