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April Saturday

The polio vaccine, a milestone of Cuba’s health programs in the last 60 years

HOLGUIN, Cuba, Feb 22 (ACN) On February 22, when the 60th Polio Vaccination Campaign begins throughout Cuba, local resident Milagros Ramos recalls the day in 1962 when her son, who was then two years old, received the first dose of this medication, as part of the Cuban Revolution's efforts to eliminate contagious childhood diseases.

Ramos, a history graduate and retired teacher, told ACN that she calls it a great scientific achievement with no precedent in the Americas and the premise to consolidate immunization programs in Cuba, an event marking a before and an after in the lives of thousands of children who got the vaccine—free of charge—thank to the dedication and will of Cuban researchers.

She is one of many other mothers whose children were protected against this deadly infectious disease of the central nervous system that causes paralysis, cognitive sequelae and even death, at time they lived in a rural area and still received the medicine, an example of the principles of equality and social justice enshrined by the revolutionary process through various social projects.

Since 1962, more than 86 million doses of the polio vaccine have been administered in Cuba. In 1994 the Pan American Health Organization declared the Island free of this disease and referred to the vaccine as one of the main achievements in prevention worldwide.
Starting today, over 42,000 children under three years of age in this province will be immunized.

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