Dr. Angus Tolkien, a professor of oncology at St. George’s University in the UK, has warned that the recently discovered polio virus in the UK could “become contagious”.
He added in an interview with the British newspaper “Express” that people were being urged to get vaccinated against polio after the virus was detected in wastewater samples in the UK.
Polio, which was officially eradicated in the UK in 2003, can, in rare cases, cause stroke and be life-threatening.
The oncology professor explained how the virus can change: “These viruses do appear from time to time, but that’s not the fact that they appeared in February. I think they could become contagious.”
He added, “My reading is that this is not a big concern for those who have been vaccinated. What we need to remember is that our vaccination program is well established with decades of experience and very effective. No need to worry about that.”
Data shows that thousands of children across the UK – especially in London – are not fully protected from polio.
Of the 693,928 children under the age of five in the UK by 2020/21, approximately 592,191 (85.3%) received the polio booster on their fifth birthday, while 101,737 (14.7 per cent) did not receive the polio booster, according to official figures.
One-third of these unsafe five-year-olds were in London (34,105).
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