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The WHO is recommending a worldwide oral polio vaccine (OPV) switch to reduce the incidence of circulating vaccine-derived polioviruses and vaccine associated paralytic polio, stemming from the type 2 vaccine.

The eradication of type 2 wild poliovirus prompted WHO immunization experts to support an OPV vaccine that addresses only types 1 and 3 of wild poliovirus. The move is a first step toward eliminating the type 2 vaccine and, ultimately, the replacement of all OPVs with inactivated poliovirus vaccine, which carries no risk of vaccine-related disease.

Due to a shortage of inactivated poliovirus vaccine, lower-risk countries will make the vaccine change several months after the April 2016 switch date.
CSIS

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