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How is Polio Spread?

The virus often enters water supplies or is spread to food from unclean hands.  Poor hand hygiene and lack of running water and soap can cause the virus to spread more easily. In the worst cases of infection, polio disease attacks the nervous system leading to weakened limbs, paralysis, and death. 

Where is the Virus Found?

Despite worldwide efforts to eliminate polio disease, war and migration of displaced populations is causing new outbreaks. CDC updates information frequently on polio cases worldwide, currently, polio cases are being reported in 35 countries. Read more about current polio cases worldwide on our blog post.

If you are 18 years and older an additional dose of polio vaccine may be recommended for your trip
The polio vaccine may be recommended if you are traveling to a country with a current outbreak

Who Needs a Polio Vaccination?

Adults 18 years and older may need an additional dose before traveling to certain countries experiencing outbreaks.  Be sure children are up-to-date on their school age vaccines, including polio, before travel.  As part of your visit, Destination Health will help you determine if a polio vaccine is right for your travel plans.

How Often Do I Need the Vaccine?

A single booster dose for people 18 years and older can provide lifetime protection if you were fully vaccinated as a child. Children and adolescents 17 years and younger living in the US typically receive 3-4 doses depending on age.  In the United States, only the inactivated polio vaccine is administered, also know by the FDA licensed name IPOL. 

How is the Polio Vaccination Given?

The injection will be placed on back of the arm under the skin layer or alternatively into the muscle of the arm (deltoid).  Historically, an oral polio vaccine was administered in the United States, however, this brand is no longer licensed for use.  Only the attenuated (killed) polio vaccine by injection is available.

Where Can I Find the Polio Vaccine Near Me?

Since Destination Health Travel Clinic is a specialty vaccine clinic, we keep the polio vaccine in-stock at our three locations; Braintree – South ShoreSpringfield – Longmeadow and Natick – Framingham.  Book an appointment online or call the clinic nearest you. 

Other Common Travel Vaccinations

Consider vaccination against other common travel illnesses you may encounter on your trip including Hepatitis B, Meningitis, and the Human Rabies Vaccine.  Read more about the current state of polio outbreaks worldwide and why the CDC and World Health Organization recommend this vaccine for many travelers.