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CLUB IN THE NEWS
- Mondays: 12:00 noon Rotary Club of Kahului: The Dunes at Maui Lani
- Tuesdays: 7:00 am Rotary Club of Lahaina Sunrise: Pioneer Inn, Lahaina
- Tuesdays: 5:00 pm on 1st, 3rd, 5th week of month: Royal Lahaina Resort, Kaanapali—4th week: Paradise Grill, Kaanapali
- Wednesdays: 7:30 am Rotary Club of Kihei Sunrise: Chez Meme Bistro and Bakery, Kihei
- Wednesdays: 12:00 noon Rotary Club of Kihei-Wailea: Mulligan's on the Blue, Wailea
- Thursdays: 7:00 am Rotary Club of Wailuku: The Vineyard Food Co, Wailuku
- Thursdays: 11:45 am Rotary Club of Lahaina: Royal Lahaina Resort, Lahaina
- Thursdays: 12:00 noon Rotary Club of Maui: Pa'ina at UH Maui College
- Thursdays: 5:30 pm Rotary Club of Valley Isle Sunset: Fernando's, Queen Ka'ahumanu Center
- Fridays: 8:00 am Rotary Club of Upcountry Maui: Casanovas, Makawao
- Meeting info not specified: Brand new Rotary Club of Lanai, July 2015
ALOHA AND E KOMO MAI (welcome)
A Message From Our 2015–2016 President, Ron Harris
The Rotary Club of Kihei-Wailea is in its 38th year of service, Meetings at Mulligan's On The Blue begin at 12:00 noon. Lunch is available from 11:45 on and meetings end between 1:15 and 1:30.
The Rotary Club of Kihei-Wailea Mission Statement:
"In the spirit of the Rotary Four-Way Test, strive to improve the lives, health, and well-being of citizens (with a special emphasis on children) in our community and that of underprivileged communities around the world. Achieve meaningful results for our service projects in an atmosphere of fun, fellowship, and aloha."
With Rotary Aloha,
Ron Harris, President
Rotary International News
Director General Health Services Punjab Dr. Zahid Pervaiz said on Thursday that the role of national media would assume central position in the sustainability of polio eradication efforts in the next few years.
Addressing a group of communication professionals and selected group of columnists and feature writers in the Orientation Workshop for Polio Eradication organized by the EPI Program and UNICEF at a local hotel, he said that Pakistan had to battle the adverse effects of polio and terrorism on its image the world over – both are negative symbolism.
Besides Additional DG Dr. Ejaz Sheikh and Additional Director EPI Dr. Syed Sohail Ahmed, technical officials of WHO, UNICEF, public relation professionals, representatives of state media and feature writers from leading media organisations were present in the workshop.
Dr. Zahid Pervaiz cited a few examples when stories without necessary research were picked up and were inaccurately or inadvertently reported as polio cases.
“Our Program managers may ignore false reports, but globally such reports reinforce the negative symbolism about the country,” he said.
[3 SEPTEMBER 2015]
Vincent Racaniello writes:
An immunodeficient individual has been excreting poliovirus in his stool for 28 years. Such chronic excreters pose a threat to the poliovirus eradication program.
Since its inception in 1988 by the World Health Organization, the poliovirus eradication program has relied on the use of the infectious, attenuated vaccine strains produced by Albert Sabin. These viruses are taken orally, replicate in the intestine, and induce protective immunity. During replication in the gut, the Sabin strains lose the mutations that prevent them from causing paralysis. Nearly every individual who receives the Sabin vaccine strains excretes so-called vaccine-derived polioviruses (VDPVs) which are known to have caused outbreaks of poliomyelitis in under-immunized populations.
Immunocompromised individuals who produce very low levels of antibodies (a condition called agammaglobulinemia) are known to excrete VDPVs for very long periods of time – years, compared with months in healthy individuals. Seventy-three such cases have been described since 1962. These individuals receive the Sabin vaccine in the first year of life, before they are known to have an immunodeficiency, at which time they must receive antibodies to prevent them from acquiring fatal infections.
The most recently described immunocompromised patient was found to excrete poliovirus type 2 vaccine for 28 years (the time period is determined by combining the known rate of change in the poliovirus genome with sequence data on viruses obtained from the patient). The VDPV is neurovirulent (causes paralysis in a mouse model), antigenically drifted, and excreted in the stool at high levels.
Because the polio eradication plan calls for cessation of vaccination at some future time, these immunocompromised poliovirus shedders pose a threat to future unimmunized individuals. The global number of such patients is unknown, and there is no available therapy to treat them – administration of antibodies does not clear the infection. The development of antivirals that could eliminate the chronic poliovirus infection is clearly needed (and ongoing). It will also be necessary to conduct environmental surveillance for the presence of VDPVs – they can be identified by properties that distinguish them from VDPVs produced by immunocompetent vaccine recipients.
While the WHO eradication plan now includes a shift to using inactivated (Salk) poliovaccine, this strategy would not impact the existing immunocompromised poliovirus shedders. Should a VDPV from these individuals cause an outbreak of polio in the post-vaccine era, it will be necessary to control the outbreak with Salk vaccine, or an infectious poliovirus vaccine that cannot revert to virulence during replication in the intestine. Polioviruses with a recoded genome are candidates for the latter type of vaccine.
Shahzeb Ahmed writes:
There is one thing that the world will be quite happy to see extinct – the polio virus. Since 1988, a globalised campaign has been in effect to eradicate the crippling virus. Today, there is just one thing stopping the dream from being realised: Pakistan.
“Do we want the world to think we are so inept that we cannot root out a disease that even the poorest and war-torn countries have managed to eradicate?” questioned Dr Muhammad Usman Chachar, the coordinator of the Emergency Operations Centre (EOC). Today, Pakistan has the advantage of the most technical knowledge. The whole world has eradicated polio. We have their expertise as well as their financial assistance at our disposal, said the man who is at the forefront of Sindh’s efforts to wipe out the virus. “If we fail the world today, we will never be able to redeem ourselves,” he said emphatically.
Dr Chachar was speaking at a media sensitisation workshop on polio reporting, organised by the EOC at the Movenpick Hotel on Wednesday.
The EOC is a collaboration of various stakeholders, including foreign donor agencies such as the World Health Organisation and the United Nations, the federal and provincial governments and volunteer organisations such as the Rotary Club. The primary objective of the bloc is the eradication of the polio virus, for which the group has been making intgrated efforts ever since its inception in the beginning of the current year.
Perhaps that is the reason the number of polio cases has dropped by 75 per cent to 29 across the country in the current year. The EOC takes credit for the drop in cases. But they still have a long way to go. And time is running out.
Dr Chachar, however, believes the odds are stacked in their favour. The polio virus can only survive and mature in the human host. It had limited persistence in the environment. And the best news is: there are effective vaccines available against it. Now all that needs to be done is focus on the immunisation of all children under the age of five. It is this age-group that is most vulnerable to the virus.
This is where the media comes in, said Abid Hassan, a member of the EOC. The group plans to carry out strategic vaccination drives across the province, focusing on the missed children. They have chalked out what they believe is an effective strategy to completely wipe out the virus. “What the media has is the power of information. While this can be used as a strategic tool to help the cause, misinformation can be harmful,” he reasoned with the journalists in the audience. Hasan was referring to cases where parents had claimed their child had taken ill after being administered the vaccine. “It is not wrong to report such cases. What is wrong is that they are reported without input from a health expert.”
His words of caution were echoed by Tom Grein, another EOC member and a polio specialist. “A vaccine cannot cause a child to fall ill. Such cases, if any, are extremely rare,” he explained. “But if reported in a negative way, they undermine the whole vaccination drive and the efforts of the thousands of people associated with it.”
The sensitisation is not just limited to the media either. The EOC members have reached out to local clerics and elders in high-risk areas, lobbying for their support for the vaccination drives. They have been largely successful in doing so.
With the world’s eyes fixed on Pakistan as the last bastion of an enemy they all want destroyed, the country is under a lot of pressure to deliver. “If we don’t, we might get disconnected from the world as there could be travel bans to and from Pakistan,” warned Dr Chachar. He is positive that they will deliver, though.
And so is Masood Bhali, the representative of Rotary International. “We will make Pakistan polio-free by 2016,” he resolved. There was no applause. People have heard such promises before.
Published in The Express Tribune, September 3rd, 2015.
[SEPT. 2, 2015]
Donald G. Mcneil Jr writes:
Although the infections are a setback in the global drive against polio, the W.H.O.’s director of polio eradication, Dr. Hamid Jafari, said that the outbreak appeared to be small and that similar ones had been quickly snuffed out.
The two children, an infant and a 4-year-old, were not paralyzed by the “wild-type virus” that is now known to be circulating only in Pakistan and Afghanistan, but by a strain derived from the oral polio vaccine itself.
The oral vaccine contains three strains of weakened live virus, and very occasionally — the W.H.O. estimates it as once in a million vaccinations — one mutates to become more virulent. Then, like wild virus, it can be shed in feces and spread to others in sewage.
Outbreaks of vaccine-derived virus are usually limited and can be stopped by immunizing children in areas around all known cases. Ukraine has a large supply of polio vaccine on hand and is preparing a vaccination drive, Dr. Jafari said.
The two new cases occurred in villages only about 30 miles apart, and sewage sampling suggests the outbreak is not widespread. Polio thrives in hot weather, and Ukraine’s cold winter should slow any spread.
The challenge, Dr. Jafari said, is that half of Ukraine’s children are not fully immunized against polio and many other diseases.
That shortfall is not related to the struggles with Russia in the eastern part of the country, he said. The outbreak is in the west, near the borders with Romania, Slovakia, Hungary and Poland.
The Health Ministry and the United Nations Children’s Fund, which supplied the vaccine, insisted then that the death was a coincidence and that the vaccine was safe. But panic spread, and nearly 100 students went to hospitals complaining of headaches, fevers and sore throats.
The president at the time, Viktor A. Yushchenko, ordered all measlesimmunizations halted while officials investigated. Since then, about a third of Ukrainian parents have told pollsters that they fear vaccines, and vaccination rates have plummeted.
The incidence of measles rose from 100 cases in 2010 to 12,700 two years later. In 2013, Unicef warned that Ukraine was at risk of a polio outbreak.
“How Ukraine’s officials handle communications strategy will be important,” Dr. Jafari said.
A polio vaccination campaign in Rahim Yar Khan district will be conducted from September 14 to September 16, Extended Programme on Immunisation Coordinator Mufakir Mian said at a meeting of the district polio eradication committee on Wednesday.
Mian said they had set a target of vaccinating more than 839,000 children under the age of five years in the district. He said 1,644 mobile teams will go door to door to vaccinate children.
Finance and Planning EDO Chaudhry Muhammad Rafi said the Anti-Polio Drive was a national cause and everyone would have to work together to make it successful. “All segments of the society can play a positive role in this regard…we need to secure our future generations from this debilitating disease.”
The participants of the meeting decided that vaccination teams will be deployed at bus stands and health centres. The teams will be supervised the area in-charge, union council medical officers, teachers and staff of other departments.
Rahim Yar Khan Health District Officer Dr Hassan Khan shared their plan for Cholistan, Machka and riverside areas. Social Worker Abdul Khaliq appreciated the role of the Health Department and NGOs working in the area for raising awareness about the importance of vaccination. Mumtaz Baig of the Rotary Club appreciated the vaccination coverage at transit points.
Polio Officer Niaz Ahmad said there were 29 cases of poliomyelitis in the country at present. Rahim Yar Khan Health EDO Makhdoom Basharat Hussain said Rahim Yar Khan district had been a polio-free zone for the last five years. “That mustn’t change.”
Com-net Communications officer Furqan Tatla said the UNICEF had completed its work in six high-risk union councils and was preparing for a drive in other high-risk areas.
The district polio eradication committee chairman directed officials to further improve the campaign and issued directions to Police Department to provide the polio teams security.
Published in The Express Tribune, September 3rd, 2015.
You can support the Rotary Club of Kihei-Wailea at no additional cost to you when you shop at Amazon.com. All you have to do is click on the Amazon link. Amazon's website will come up, and all you have to do is shop like you normally would. Amazon will donate between 5%-15% of your purchase back to our club! Click and shop now. It's that easy!
Bring your HI 5 aluminum cans, and plastic and glass bottles to the meeting. They add up to make a large contribution for our service projects.
New Rotarian Action Group helps countries grow food that suits their nutritional needs
Correcting the "Green Revolution" mistake of promoting American-European farming in developing countries, this Rotary project changes the focus to indigenous crops that can allow the population to eat more nutritiously according to their specific needs and are already adapted to local pests, diseases, and climatic conditions.
Kihei Boat Ramp, Kamaole Beach Parks, or South Maui Dune Restoration projects every Monday from 7:30 - 9:30 am. Contact Bob & Lis Richardson:808-264-1798 or visit South Maui Volunteers