Partnership, Determination Will Help Eradicate Polio, Complete Albert Sabin’s Vision
STAT: Remembering Albert Sabin and the vaccine that changed the world
John Sever, vice chair of Rotary’s International PolioPlus Committee
“…With the support of national governments and using the technique of mass immunization, [the Global Polio Eradication Initiative] — now made up of Rotary [International], the World Health Organization, the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, UNICEF, and the Bill & Melinda Gates Foundation — has reduced the number of children paralyzed by wild poliovirus from 350,000 in 1988 to just 22 cases last year. We have every expectation that the number will soon drop to zero. Through this extensive partnership, [Albert] Sabin’s spark of breathtaking ambition [to eradicate polio] flamed into a beacon of cooperation, professionalism, and hope. When its work is done, and the world is free of polio, the achievement will be a testament not only to the vision and determination of one man, but also to the ability of a world united in compassion to determine its own future” (3/1).