Samples taken between February and May from London’s Beckton Sewage Treatment Works, which serves around four million people in north and east London, suggest the virus has spread to a small number of people.
In response, the UKHSA is now urging people to check their polio vaccines are up to date.
But how do I check if I’m vaccinated against polio and at what age is it usually vaccinated?
Here’s what you need to know.
What is polio?
It was officially eradicated in the UK in 2003, but the UK Health Security Agency (UKHSA), in conjunction with the Medicines and Healthcare Products Regulatory Agency (MHRA), found polio in sewage samples collected by the London Beckton Sewage Treatment Works.
Polio is caused by a virus that spreads easily when an infected person coughs or sneezes, and it can also be spread through food or water that has come into contact with the feces of a person who has the virus.
Is there a polio vaccine?
The best way to prevent polio is to make sure you and your child are up to date with your vaccinations, the NHS has said.
Polio vaccination is part of the routine NHS vaccination schedule for children and is given if your child:
- 8, 12 and 16 weeks old as part of the 6-in-1 vaccination
- 3 years and 4 months as part of the 4-in-1 (DTaP/IPV) preschool boosters
- 14 years as part of the 3-in-1 (Td/IPV) Teen Booster
You must have all of these shots to be fully vaccinated against polio.
However, you can always get vaccinated against polio, even if you are not traveling to a country where there is a risk of contracting polio.
You should also get vaccinated even if you have had polio before, as it protects against different types of polio.
How long does the polio vaccine last?
Children in the UK usually get the five necessary doses of polio vaccine as part of the routine vaccination schedule for long-term protection, the agency said Fit For Travel NHS website.
You can get booster shots of polio vaccine if you have not received all 5 doses.
However, if you are traveling to a country with a high risk of polio, a booster shot may be necessary, especially if it has been 10 years since your last shot.
The website states: “If you have not completed at least five doses of the polio vaccine, you may need additional doses before travelling.
“If you have completed the minimum of 5 doses of polio vaccine, you should receive a booster dose of polio vaccine if it has been more than 10 years since a previous vaccination.”
How can I check my polio vaccination status?
You must contact your GP to check your polio vaccination status and request your complete records.
You can also request to have them added to your NHS account which can be viewed via apartment or website.
Some people may also have a childhood vaccination book detailing their vaccinations.
If, as an adult, you have received a booster vaccination privately for travel purposes, this information may not be stored by your general practitioner.
To check if your child is due for a vaccination, you must request their medical record from the GP practice where they are registered.
According to the NHS, any person with parental responsibility can request the records of a child aged 12 or younger, but children aged 13 and over are normally considered to have the power to grant or deny parent access to medical records, unless the Fall is a reason to propose otherwise.
However, British Medical Association guidelines state that all reasonable efforts must be made to encourage the child to involve parents or guardians.
Children aged 13 and over can access their vaccination history digitally by logging into their online account via the NHS app or website.
To create an account, you must register for online services, provide proof of identity, and ask your GP practice for online access to your complete record.
If your child is not registered with a GP, records are kept by Primary Care Support England (PCSE) on behalf of NHS England.
https://www.nationalworld.com/health/how-long-does-polio-vaccine-last-age-people-vaccinated-does-it-last-for-life-how-to-check-history-3742498 Older people are vaccinated against polio – and how to check the history