Examining Women’s Role In Polio Eradication

Writing in the Bill & Melinda Gates Foundation’s “Impatient Optimists” blog, Rachel Lonsdale, a communications officer at the foundation, examines “the critical role women vaccinators are playing in eradicating polio.” She highlights an article published in The Independent this week, which profiles a vaccinator in Pakistan named Gulnaz Sherazi. She states, “Today, we are at the cusp of worldwide polio eradication,” adding, “It can be done thanks to many global organizations including Rotary International, the CDC, UNICEF and the WHO that have been working for more than 25 years to rid the world of this paralyzing disease. But it is because of local leaders and health workers in Pakistan like Ms. Sherazi, and women like her [in] Afghanistan and Nigeria — we will defeat this terrible disease” (9/10).