Polio eradication has been one of the greatest success stories of global vaccine delivery. While preventing an estimated 16 million polio infections since 1988, the Global Polio Eradication Initiative (GPEI) has at the same time developed valuable public health infrastructure and trained thousands of health workers around the world. These tools are already addressing diseases other than polio and have the potential to control outbreaks at their source, contributing enormously to global health security for generations to come. Yet eradication remains elusive and the valuable tools created by the polio program are at a risk of being lost if not reintegrated with immunization systems.
The CSIS Global Health Policy Center critically examines U.S. leadership and international approaches to global poliovirus eradication, offering expert analysis concerning the unique challenges faced by Afghanistan and Pakistan as the last countries to interrupt polio transmission, and insights on how existing polio assets could be sustained and repurposed for other global health priorities as countries become polio free.