Polio Confirmed In Wastewater In Hudson Valley For First Time In Months

The polio virus has been discovered in Hudson Valey wastewater for the first time in months, according to state officials.

Rockland County officials are encouraging unvaccinated residents to receive the polio vaccine.
Rockland County officials are encouraging unvaccinated residents to receive the polio vaccine. Photo Credit: Rockland County Government

The New York State Department of Health confirmed the presence of poliovirus in Rockland County wastewater for the first time since October.

This single positive result was collected in February and has so far been followed by non-detections in wastewater samples, but unvaccinated residents should still act now to protect themselves, said Rockland County officials. 

Rockland officials are also reminding residents who are not vaccinated to do so with increased travel expected between Rockland County and Israel over Passover.

Health officials added that adults who completed the polio vaccine series as children may receive a one-time booster dose of the polio vaccine 

Earlier reports:

Polio traditionally hits seasonally, with large outbreaks typically surfacing during summer which is why the county remains focused on getting those unvaccinated or behind on their 4-dose polio vaccine series up to date, particularly infants and preschool-aged children because transmission of this disease only continues if overall vaccination rates remain low.

“It is our obligation to protect all our residents from these debilitating and potentially fatal diseases. The law requiring childhood vaccinations has been in place for many years for this very reason,” said County Executive Ed Day. “I urge our residents to act now and protect yourselves, your family, and your community.”

As of Thursday, March 23, 19,282 doses of the polio vaccine have been administered to Rockland County residents:

The Rockland County Department of Health is offering the following free polio booster clinics at the Robert Yeager Health Center, 50 Sanatorium Road, Building A, in Pomona. 

These clinics are only for those who have completed their polio vaccination series. These clinics are walk-ins; no appointment is needed:

  • Friday, April 14, from 9 a.m. - 11 a.m.
  • Friday, April 28, from 9 a.m. - 11 a.m.

Any New York resident who needs the Inactivated Polio Vaccine can receive one by calling the Health Department at 845-364-2520 or 845-364-2524 to make an appointment at one of their regular immunization clinics.

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